The Circus Year (2nd Excerpt from Climbing Out of the Box)

Since I am still waiting for the release of my new book, “Climbing Out of the Box”, I decided to post another excerpt.  This time from the chapter I call the Circus Year………

 

 

There were a lot of special speakers brought into the meetings at what I had begun to think of as “the circus church.”  There was one guy who said he could see the demons, who looked like gorillas, lurking in the four corners of the room just waiting to pounce if we got in the “flesh.”   At the time I wondered, since I live in my flesh, how could I get out of it and be safe?  I tried with all my might to see these gorillas.  I kept looking over my shoulder to make sure they weren’t sneaking up on me, since I was still “in the flesh.”  Everyone else looked pretty fleshy too, so I didn’t understand what I had to do to keep these gorilla demons away from me.  I also noticed that this man terrified the children in the harsh ways he spoke to them and threatened them with the hand of the almighty God falling on them if they made noise in his services.  I remember being aware of a giant red flag at his behavior and his attitude toward children and the church.  Again, I felt God reminding me that children flocked to Jesus everywhere He went.  Children adored Jesus and loved sitting all over Him and loving on Him and laughing with Him.  Never, in all the history we have of Jesus, were children afraid of or not drawn to Him.  The Bible clearly tells of His incredible love for them by His actions towards them.  I wondered at the time, was this visiting preacher really a representative of Christ?

Our tithes and offering services were quite interesting as well.  There would be loud music and lots of shouting and “praising” when that time to give came around in the service.  Big trashcans were brought out to the front of the church as a sign of faith that lots of money would come in.  We then marched around the building, soldier style, filing by the cans and dropping in our monies.  The wealthier members had the preeminent places at the front of the lines as an example to us of how we could be prosperous if we were spiritual enough by giving large sums of money.  If we contributed enough, we were heading for prosperity from God!  I remember feeling in my spirit that something was not right.  I became concerned that all this money was being used only for supporting the church building, and, as I suspect now, the pastor himself, as opposed to giving it to help people in need.

Things really began to break down for me the night we had another special speaker who wanted to pray an “anointing” for all the ministries in the room.  My partner and I were excited to receive prayer, and, since we were part of the group with a “special ministry,” we were anxious to get this special anointing from God.  Many times these various characters would “transfer their anointing” to us.  But I had never felt any difference in me when they would do these transference prayers.  So on this night my ministry partner and I made our way to the front of the room and had hands laid on us by our spiritual fathers.  We both fell over backwards, spectacularly, I must say, under the “anointing.”  But looking back at it now, I think I fell because I knew it was expected, and it really looked more spiritual to the audience, and I was caught up in the hype.  I was influenced by the power of suggestion.   Plus, the guy praying pushed me, I am sure of it.  I thought I was supposed to fall and not embarrass him for his lack of power.  I see now that this whole thing had nothing to do with God.  It was about control and power over people.  This was unlike my Jesus who is so kind, gentle, and not obtrusive.

While my friend and I lay on the floor, I felt a rushing wind blowing over us.  I thought, “how appropriate, we are in the upper room and the Holy Ghost is blowing over us just like at the day of Pentecost.”   At the same time, the door to the room we were in blew open and slammed into the wall with a horrifying crash.  But there was no one there.  At this point, I was horrified and terrified.  The next thing I knew, there were fast, heavy footsteps running towards me where I lay on the floor.  My partner and I both raised our heads and looked up and to the left at exactly the same time, just as a tall man from out of nowhere ran right toward us, leapt over our heads, and headed for the window.  He jumped head first-out the window, and fell two stories to the street below.  Everyone just sat there stunned and not sure what to do.  I lay on the floor in a state of disbelief.

The church had a prayer person who was called the Intercessor.  Her job was to pray consistently for the church and all associated with it.  She was revered as the one within our ranks who was closest to God.  It was thought she had an inroad with Him.   When this man ran through the service and jumped out the window, she jumped up dramatically and ran down the stairs to the street.  When she saw the man on the pavement, she ran to him and threw herself on top of him, in true Elijah form, praying loudly in another language.  Meanwhile, someone had called an ambulance, and when they arrived, the EMTs couldn’t get her off the injured man so they could tend to him.  I can only imagine what they were thinking.  It was embarrassing.  I didn’t go outside to join the crowd, for fear someone would know I was with that group.  The paramedics had to physically remove the Intercessor from the man, and he was taken away to the hospital.  We never saw him again.

My only awkward conclusion to this episode was, “What in the world am I doing in this loony bin?”  It was explained to us later that we had gotten so full of the Holy Spirit while praying, that we just witnessed a full display of the demons making spectacles of themselves.  (I thought it must have been the gorilla guys).  

 

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15 thoughts on “The Circus Year (2nd Excerpt from Climbing Out of the Box)

  1. Dixie, I am going to be honest and tell you I am laughing reading this episode, although it is tragic as well. But as you and I have talked through the years, we both have experienced similar instances if deceit. This episode of yours, however, is probably the weirdest thing I’ve ever heard of. I can’t wait to read “the rest of the story.”

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  2. I know Linda…as I was posting I thought this is embarrassing to let people know I actually was a part of this…then I started laughing too at the absurdity of it all………..yes, it was tragic as lot of people were hurt…but as we know, that religious spirit is always out to hurt, judge, and rip peoples faith in God when it is really just man’s weird ideas……

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  3. Dixie, this is hilariously embarrassing because it sounds a lot like some stuff I grew up around. I never would have thought to write about it, but it does make for interesting reading. It’s pretty entertaining for folks who think its not real. 🙂

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    • You are so right…I even hesitated putting it out there but it is part of my story of being abused by a religious spirit outside of true relationship with a living God. It is entertaining but tragic at the same time….so many equate this behavior with God and that is why they turn away from him….. Thanks for commenting!!! Blessings.

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  4. One can only laugh at the experiences we’ve had. However, you do have a gift for making the tragic so very humorous. I came out of an abusive church too. Calvary Chapel really helped me with its line upon line, precept upon precept of studying God’s word. Basic Biblical Christianity–that’s for me.

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    • What’s with all this animal behavior? I just had to tell you that in the heydey of the “Drunk in the Spirit”, and “Holy Laughter” movement that swept our former churches, I was subjected to alleged prophesies that took the form of clucking chickens, roaring lions, purring kittens, etc. The last straw and the thing that made me boogy on out of there was at a Toronto Blessing meeting in Pismo when my niece assured me and the rather large assembly that while “drunk in the spirit” she saw God with Groucho Marx glasses on and He was playing peek a boo with her, Then she delivered half hour sermon on the prophesies that she got from this vision of God in Groucho Marx glasses. You guessed it–it was the standard prophesy in these instances, i.e. “You will meet a handsome stranger, and you will have plenty of money and plenty of kids. Everything you touch will turn to gold, including the teeth in your head,” I used to call them Christian psychics. Maybe that was too nice of a title. Today, I am amazed at myself that I sat through those meetings for even one minute, much less slightly participated in them. Yes, deception to the max.

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      • Oh how well I remember but by then I had learned to run from that kind of weird stuff. Last I read the word says that signs and wonders follow those who love Jesus, but a wicked and perverse generation seeks signs and wonders….and that dogs are on the outside of the gate…so if it barks I would run the other way….

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      • LOL.” iF IT BARKS, i RUN THE OTHER WAY.” I’M GIGGLING. Seriously though, I was deceived myself, and that’s why I know that both of us have lots of compassion on and want to warn those that are still there.

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  5. Been there, done that, Dixie!! Isn’t it interesting that most pentacostals/charismatics use I Corinthians 12 and 14 as a handbook for how to do church, when in actuality it is a strong condemnation of the Corinthians’ idiotic behavior. I once was the only pentacostal in a men’s discipleship group led by a non-charismatic man who did his thesis at Dallas theological Seminary on the gifts of the Holy Spirit and had been teaching it for thirty years. He agreed to debate me on the subject but his one caveat was that I had to do my own homework. So, in a pompous snit, I restudied I Corinthians. Amazingly enough, my theology shifted as I discovered I was “doing” pentacostalism the way that other pentacostals told me it should be done and it had nothing to do with what the bible said.

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    • Same here, Patrick!! Walking in freedom now, I was delighted when I restudied those same scriptures, as I realized that I didn’t have to let my freedoms to ever be a cause for someone else to stumble. God is such a Gentleman and I am sure that even He hangs His head at some of the weirdness His kids can get pulled into thinking they are being spiritual. When in actuality their antics only cause others to run the other way. Love what you said about when you finally studied it for yourself your theology shifted. How many things have we believed simply because we were told it by someones interpretation rather than look it up for ourselves? Thanks for reading and commenting….

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  6. I have never been exposed to anything like this. I was raised a Catholic. We had a small church in town that was called a “holy roller” church. I never went in, but I remember walking by in the evening and hearing all kinds of noises, shouts, etc. I wasn’t a Christian then so it was all very strange to me. I never met anyone, that I know of, that attended this church that admitted they attended there although I know I had to know some of them as it was a small town. To tell the truth, I was only witnessed to by one person. She was an Assembly of God person who was my best friends mother. After I became a Christian, I made it a point to tell her. I actually attended her church with a young lady I was dating and worried the whole time what would happen to me if the pope found out. I became a Christian when I was twenty-eight and am a charismatic. Interesting how the Lord directs us. I’m looking forward to reading your book.

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    • Hi Tom…thanks for sharing your impressions. Took me a lot of years to realize that Jesus isn’t weird, doesn’t interrupt Himself, and never forces Himself on anyone. He wants to draw the world to Himself and not scare them half to death and drive them away. His gifts are just as relevant today in the market place..we just don’t have to make spectacles of ourselves. And we don’t have to allow our freedoms to be a cause for others to stumble if they don’t understand them. I would be interested in your opinion of my book when you read it….Blessings!!!

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