Posted 21 August 2009 10:37 AM Hide Post
Hello Grace Giving People,
Gail here, introducing myself.
Finding Shalom Place may have saved me from going to places that might have not been the best for me. Stasha's posts about her experiences on false gods to Christ shook me
to my core, but in a good way. I started dabbling in the New Age about three years ago.
Eckhart Tolle made sense to my mind, and as embarrassing as it is to say, his books and many others were fast replacing my bible. It was through a link on E.T. I discovered Shalom Place. In no way am I disparaging the beauty of the search or casting judgment on other paths... See, I had lost my first love. God seemed to disappear, in the midst of all that was going on with my husband, my soul in great distress. I believe now, I was looking for a "fix" in the new age material. I have started to compare new age works with my Christian beliefs and I am noticing that there isn't a need for Godly sorrow which leads to repentance, or accountability, there certainly isn't sin. I lined up as much as I could of the lingo of new age to fit biblicaly, and tried to ignore the scriptures that asked of me what seemed impossible.
I justified a lot of this new teaching with, its in the bible or all truth is God's truth.
Oh, and all the N.A.stuff on positive affirmations! After a reading several books that swore that you could change your life through affirmations...I realized affirmations were keeping me from honestly facing myself, by ignoring the tug or conviction in my gut, and deep pain in my heart. When I heard Byron Katie say that positive affirmations don't stick in the mind because all they are is paste, that held my attention. I tried pasting over my weakness/flaws with positive affirmations instead of facing how deceitful my heart can be. And I stopped confessing to the Lord to receive his mercy and forgiveness.. I only wanted to behold what was lovely inside of me, because of the years of confusion and pain.
I was burnt out and so tired from the health issues and old wounds... During this leg of my journey, I grew hard and thought the word "sin" reeked of antiquity, and (as Oprah preaches) and scientists state; we are evolved beyond that old fashioned language.
I still appreciate Katie Byron's ministry on the work, because I do need to to question my thoughts...the painful beauty of the work, if one practices it, is the fourth step, where we come face to face in owning what we have blamed others for. Which brought me back to the gospel on many fronts; including confessing my faults to another...but even in Katie's work I couldn't find a place where Jesus and the cross
Finding Shalom Place has stirred my heart... causing me to ask myself how many different spiritual gigs have I found and lost along the way?
Another realization hit that many of the the N.A. ideas were crowding out my need for the gospel... I am nota god" or "goddess.
"The Secret," or "The Course in Miracles" to name a few, never named my need for a Savior. If they did I missed it. It was assumed that I am basically good and can tap into my inner wisdom without the Holy Spirit and make all my dreams a reality.
Sad to say, I questioned if I even needed the Holy Spirit and more importantly, Did I still
believe in the gospel? This all happened gradually. However it was a real wake up call when I realized where I was heading. Paying attention now, I see that the New Age movement has thrown the baby out with the bathwater= Christ and the Cross.
I found this quote which seemed to sum up what the New Age Spirituality preached:
"A God without wrath, brought men without sin, into a Kingdom without judgment, through the ministrations of a Christ without a Cross"... and suddenly the idea that I am a divine spark, no mistakes, I am not a sinner, but a beautiful eternal soul who has no need for repentance or forgiveness from God collided with the message of the gospel. It dawned that something was askew in my mind. I think or like to think, that mercy and truth started to scratch upon my consciousness, and finding your web site helped me to see that I have a God who loves me with an everlasting love....I am coming back to Jesus.. because I was almost convinced that Christianity had gotten it all wrong...
I think, in part, I was exhausted and tired of trusting and not knowing... that I fell for this
Also in the N.A. there wasn't a history of angry pastors trying to shame my soul into
submission, or asking me to Thank God for sexual abuse, or telling me I needed to put my
past behind me because I was a new creature in Christ. (I spent fourteen years in a legalist church and O, the damage done)
Excuses or reasons, I don't think it much matters to God, He has welcomed me back. Now to trust in my desire to live for love with compassion, as I stumble on in life. I thank-you for Shalom Place because you have really made me think, though much is over my head!
The discussions are powerful and through y'all words the Spirit is teaching. Forgive me if this is long winded.
In His Grace,
Welcome aboard, Gail. Somewhere on this site I found a description of Shasha's journey, and it reminded me a bit of your story.
Yes, thank you Gail for your sharing. It's gratifying to hear how the discussions here have helped to influence your journey. Your own contributions are sure to help others as well.
I can relate to a good bit of your struggle with the New Age, Gail. But as you say or allude, our souls, if we face the pain and don't dissociate from it, will always show us the need for Christ. Only God made human can complete the heart.
Thank-you for the welcome. So much truth with grace here at S.P. has impacted my heart, especially this by w.c.
w.c. Quote: How could we come to this end, and to Him, if He took away our suffering? In a horrible sense, if He took away our suffering, we'd never come to the end of ourselves before death, and never know how much deeper His love is than any creaturely comfort.
And that opened me up...to see how I ran after other gods, because the Lord didn't seem to be healing my wounds or giving me a peace that passed all understanding, or beauty for my ashes, at least not yet.
I learned a lot on my detour into New Age
and appreciate many of the practices. However, it was my error to shut my heart off to Christ and His teachings.
The post and link that Phil sent, has opened a whole new world for me. quote from Phil: Here's a teaching from Brother Lawrence, who is known for his book, "The Practice of the Presence of God" (it's free on the Ethereal Christian Classics website).
The more I try to run from suffering, the more it has me in it's grip. And I can see today that God's Ways being so much higher than mine, that He wants me to stop resisting the pain, stop trying to spiritalize it, disocciating from it and just be with it. (As you said w.c.)
Thank-You for using your gifts of experience, wisdom, education to help... Gail
|Powered by Social Strata|