Monday, January 25, 2010

Burden Up in Dade City!

To be told you are a slave and must serve your master's whims without question is bad. But to be told you are free and should rejoice greatly in that glorious freedom, all the while being locked by shame and guilt into a greater bondage than the slave's is much, much worse.

This is spiritual abuse. This is legalism. A legalist binds you up with the law or their own twisted view of God all while yelling in your ear to be grateful you have them as an under-shepherd.

There is no way to disarm any man except through guilt... If there is not enough guilt, we must create it... But save us from the man of a clear conscience.
-Ayn Rand-

A man (or woman) of clear conscience was not allowed in the Dade City church I attended. A person of clear conscience cannot be manipulated by guilt.
And guilt was the favorite tool for motivation by the pastor.

I remember feeling guilty that the church didn't have enough money to cover expenses for the school's curriculum (funny, though, the pastor had at least six closets stuffed with expensive clothes).

I felt guilty for being twenty minutes late to a cleaning night for the school's end of the year program (funny, though, the pastor hardly ever participated in these cleaning nights).

Obviously, there was a pattern. The congregation felt the guilt wielded by the pastor.

Ken Blue says in Healing Spiritual Abuse:
Universally, the dominant trait of oppressive religious and governmental systems is the multiplication of rules and regulations. These serve to control behavior when kept and promote guilt when broken.

To be continued...

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