Sorry, y'all, I know it's Christmas Eve and all but I have a problem. I have been going to my church for about a year and a half. While I have had some issues with some practices (exclusively K.J.V., and I have taken issue with some things said in sermons, plus sometimes he wears sunglasses throughout the whole sermon), I truly believe that good is being done. There are over a hundred ministries, and we even have an office Mon-Fri at a public school where kids can come get counseled and hear about Jesus. That's huge!
I love that it's a mixture of every race and social background, and that the music is fun and that it's different than any church I've ever been to.
Unfortunately, my little nagging "I don't know about that's" have a basis, which I discovered tonight.
It's a long story but I will say that I no longer can attend that church. I believe that the leadership is corrupt and that they are not truly following God. I knew from the website where I got the information that my pastor had issues in the past,but I thought that I should be mindful of forgiveness, and that everyone screws up. So I kept going. However, based on comments on the site from recent attendees of my church, I have to accept the fact that my pastor is not a man of God. He is a charlatan, and I am kind of mad that I've been tithing there, but God knows that I meant to obey him.
I am just sad and scared for those that don't know the truth. Luckily, I was not heavily involved because it is kind of a far drive for me. There are so many people that give their whole week to the church, and according to the website, there is all types of ungodly behavior going on in the "upper" echelons of the leadership and those in their inner sanctum.
I am so thankful to be able to leave and I would like to say I won't look back, but how can I not? I feel as though I have a responsibility here..but what do I do? My church was voted "Church of the Week" on the 700 club. My pastor's amazing story of finding his dad is most likely a lie, as there are conflicting stories of how they met. His dad is also a pastor. His dad's church is labeled a cult, and while I don't think my church is one, based on what I have learned, I do not think the Word of God is being taught correctly, and not by accident. One example being the teaching of people being saved simply through a prayer to accept Christ. I do believe this is a starting point, but it is NOT being a Christian. That could be very misleading. That is the thing I have taken the most issue with, however, I kept looking to all the people they were helping. I would get my guard up about certain things, and then I would let myself be lulled back into complacency.
So, I thank God for the Christmas gift of having my eyes opened, but I need advice.. and I will certainly be praying about this..where do I go from here? I know I will be able to find a good church, and I have been getting solid teaching on my own time through daily online sermons and through Bible study and fellowship with other believers. I have remained grounded in truth. But what about those whose only exposure to God and his people come through a bunch of fakers?? Thank God I have some sense of discernment, but even I was pulled in by the music and the showy sermons. And how do I go back to a church with slow worship? More than that, I feel like I HAVE to take a stand against this..but honestly I am a little scared of retribution (duh, you should never be scared of church leaders) and I just don't know what to do.
Thank you, God, that you are not blinded by outward appearances..please open the eyes of your people..