Church Refugee Sanity Guide – Part Seven What About Community and Fellowship?

Fellowship and Community

Church Refugee Sanity Guide – Part 7, What about Fellowship and Community?

Often when leaving a traditional Christian church expression, the question arises? “What will I do for community and fellowship?” In this session of the Church Refugee Sanity I provide some key questions to ask yourself that moves the thought processes past “organic versus institutional church” arguments that really miss the point. Being “meeting-centric” is the problem, not the form of the meeting. Learn how to find rich and fulfilling fellowship apart from routine church meetings . . .  of any sort. It is not about finding a perfect meeting form that you or I may “like.” The question is: “Are we assignable to relationships by the Holy Spirit or not?”


 

Copyright 2016,  Dr. Stephen R. Crosby, www.stevecrosby.org. Would you like to partner with us in distributing our materials and perhaps generate some income for yourself?  Please go to www.stevecrosby.com for details of our Affiliate program. This ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those believe in the message of a radical grace in a new covenant understanding. If this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? Thank you and God bless you.

Church Refugee Sanity Guide – Part Six Revisiting Authority and Submission Outside of Traditional Structures

Authority and Submission

Revisiting Authority and Submission

When individuals decide not to attend a traditional church structure, they are often challenged by others as being “out from under authority or “not in submission” or “out from spiritual covering” or similar threats and warnings. Starting with a quick look at some church history, this lesson deconstructs some common teaching on these topics. These things should not be defined by church meetings, church activities, rank, hierarchy, and position in a system. Rather, in Christ’s kingdom authority and submission must be defined by relational trust, love,  and expressed in an ethos of family. Where love abounds, all these other things happen effortlessly and without a need for emphasis.


 

Copyright 2016,  Dr. Stephen R. Crosby, www.stevecrosby.org. Would you like to partner with us in distributing our materials and perhaps generate some income for yourself?  Please go to www.stevecrosby.com for details of our Affiliate program. This ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those believe in the message of a radical grace in a new covenant understanding. If this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? Thank you and God bless you.

Church Refugee Sanity Guide – Part Five Friends and Family: Navigating Relationships When Others Don't Understand

When you and I decide to follow Christ outside of traditional church structures, one of the biggest challenges faced is navigating relationships with friends and family. The need of, and fear of losing our social relationships can very easily become our God. I hear statements like this all the time: “Well, I know what Christ is requiring of me, but if I do that, I will lose all my friends, and I won’t do that.” Even more relationally threatening is: “If we make this change our children will lose all their friendships, and I am unwilling to let that happen.”  This installment of the Church Refugee Sanity Guide presents some insights and suggestions on how we can navigate these difficult situations with friends and family–how to walk in your own convictions with love and charity toward others who do not understand and perhaps strongly disagree with you.


 

Church Refugee Sanity Guide

Church Refugee Sanity Guide

Copyright 2016,  Dr. Stephen R. Crosby, www.stevecrosby.org. Would you like to partner with us in distributing our materials and perhaps generate some income for yourself?  Please go to www.stevecrosby.com for details of our Affiliate program. This ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those believe in the message of a radical grace in a new covenant understanding. If this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? Thank you and God bless you.

Five Hundred Years of the Reformation: An Appeal for Today Renouncing Violence, Vitriol, and Venom in the Cause of Christ

Five Hundred Years: The Reformation

A New Reformation Dawning

I believe we are  living in the most significant moment in the history of the church since the Reformation. While we can be thankful and grateful for the many benefits that derived to us from the Reformation, many of the beliefs, values, and practices that came from it are being challenged in this hour.  In my opinion, rightly and necessarily so.  On the eve of the quincentenary (500th anniversary) celebration of the Reformation, I have an appeal to make.

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The Cult of Success Learning to Dream Small

Dream Small: How to Have Success in Ministry

Dream Small: How to Have “Success” in Ministry

If you have spent any time at all in Western/Evangelical/Charismatic Christianity, you have heard things like these:

  • God is big, you need to dream big.
  • God has big dreams for you.
  • Your faith needs to be big.
  • You need to be a dream chaser.
  • Your faith is too small.
  • You are destined to be a world changer.
  • Overcome your ministry limitations.
  • Take your ministry to the “next level” . . . and so on. 

American cultural values of success: size (numbers in attendance), finances, and fame (sff) –bigger is better–more is “God,”  have spread through Western (American) popular Evangelicalism like a bad outbreak of athlete’s foot fungus in a men’s locker room.

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Church Refugee Sanity Guide – Part Four The Psychology of Transition - Part Three - The Power of No

Part Four of the Church Refugee Sanity Guide, presents ways to recover from the pain we will likely experience in our  relationships (church, family, and friends) when we are misunderstood because we no longer participate in traditional forms and expressions of “church.” If you or someone you know has been damaged, accused, threatened or other wise spiritually abused in a religious atmosphere, I entreat you to watch this video (as well as Part Five that will be coming next in this series). I think they are the most helpful and practical things I have ever done in this regard.

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Apostolic Covering – Old Idea in a New Dress Stop the Madness - Part Two

Apostolic Covering

Apostolic Covering – Stop the Madness

Within Charismatic circles, there is a widely influential subset group called the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR). One of their strongly held beliefs is the necessity of submitting to an alleged “apostolic covering” or maintaining what is called “governmental alignment” to a “covering apostle.”  It is alleged that failure to do so, cuts off heavenly blessing and opens the individual to spiritual dangers and demonic attacks. The Protestant forefathers must be rolling over in their graves. They gave their life’s blood to do away with the belief system that required a class of religious professionals to broker or mediate the blessings of heaven to the believer. It is beyond painful to see the resurrected form of this doctrine being espoused in so-called apostolic churches and foisted under the banner of “new revelation,” “restoring apostolic covering,” and “restoring apostolic authority.” It is not new revelation. It is old heresy in a new dress.

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Spiritual Covering Stop the Nonsense

stopsignSpiritual covering is a biblically illegitimate, bad idea, that just won’t go away.

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Church Refugee Sanity Guide – Part Three The Psychology of Transition - Part Two

In this third installment of the Church Refugee Sanity Guide, I talk about understanding and managing the pain and strain that occurs in our social and relational networks during times of transition, particularly when leaving or changing a church affiliation.

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Church Refugee Sanity Guide – Part Two The Psychology of Transition - Part One

The Psychology of Transition – Part One

Leaving an institutional religious expression that you may have invested in for a long time can be emotionally, mentally, spiritually, and relationally overwhelming. We often do not understand what is happening in us, to us, and around us. For all the alleged “Biblical literacy” that Christians are supposed to possess, we can be very ill-informed and ill-equipped to function well as human beings.  Understanding the processes of transition and change (in any arena: job, family, church, relationships, finances, etc.) will help us understand ourselves, and others. We can successfully and fruitfully navigate difficult seasons of change.  This second session of the Church Refugee Sanity guide looks at what happens to us psychologically during a major transition: 1) stability/comfort, 2) discontinuity/awareness, 3) disembedding and more. Leaving institutional religious expressions.


 

Part Two - The Church Refugee Sanity Guide

The Church Refugee Sanity Guide – Part Two

Copyright 2016,  Dr. Stephen R. Crosby, www.stevecrosby.org. Would you like to partner with us in distributing our materials and perhaps generate some income for yourself?  Please go to www.stevecrosby.com for details of our Affiliate program. This ministry is sustained by the freewill offerings of those believe in the message of a radical grace in a new covenant understanding. If this article has been a blessing to you, would you prayerfully consider making a tax-deductible contribution through our Paypal button to help? Thank you and God bless you.