Do You Think It’s Easy?

To do what I’ve done?

To come against former friends, pastors, and people who I considered family and call them cult leaders and cult members is not easy. In fact, I questioned myself. I’ve had people call me crazy. I’ve had people unfriend me on facebook and in real life. I’ve been cussed out, harrassed, and belittled.

It’s EMBARRASSING for me to put all my personal business on the Internet. I’d much rather forget this ever happened and move on. Trust me.

The worst part about it, is I’ve felt alienated by literally everyone except my family and my best friend over the years. No one stood by my side and said, “Hey Lisa, we’ll give statements with you,” or “We agree with you.”

No.

In fact, when I’ve asked people their stories or to stand with me, they’ve doubted me, called me crazy, or told me I was wrong. They’ve questioned my motives, told me I was acting out of line, or just made me feel really stupid. And I am really stupid–the bottom line is, I can’t change any one and I certainly can’t change an entire ideology (cult or not). I can’t change a person who leads thousands of people and indoctrinates them week after week.

But, in the back of my mind, I see my high school teacher, John Kopp’s poster on the wall: “Stand up for what is right, even if you’re standing alone.”

See, in the words of one of my good friends, whom I’ll call “E”, no one was our advocate when we were there. No one told us that it was a cult. No one helped us see that it was wrong, or find a way out. No one spoke up for us. No one knew. It’s our responsibility to speak up now that we know what went on there–the amount of abuse and hurt we went through–so that young people after us and staff after us don’t have to suffer the mental and spiritual abuse we did. We need to give the silent a voice. They don’t know they need it yet, but one day they might.

I feel like I’m doing the right thing. You might not agree, but I ask that if you do, you please email me your personal statement at mycultlife@gmail.com.

5 thoughts on “Do You Think It’s Easy?”

  1. Lisa,
    I applaud you for doing what you are doing. I don’t think you’re crazy or stupid or ever have been. I wish I had started reading this sooner, and I certainly wish someone had started saying things sooner. I don’t have a personal story to share, but know that I stand by you and am praying for your (and others’) continued healing. Lots of love!

    1. Jodi,
      Thanks for reading and thank you SO MUCH for the comment. It was definitely hard to speak up and I know it’s been more difficult since I have, but I will keep writing and keep seeking therapy so I can. =)
      Lisa

  2. Having read your story and Jana’s all I can say is wow. In the past there were times that My Honey and I spoke of the feelings we had about the “rules” and some of the situations we saw. I loved MC and what you all were doing. My heart was so involved with you all, as if you were my children. I just had that gut feeling… you know something you just can not put your finger on. I am so filled with sorrow with what i am reading. I love you and I know that none of us go through anything for nothing. Our stories are a part of our testimonies and they are there for a reason. Love Beth

  3. Dear Lisa,

    I really admire you for standing up, even if you feel alone. I must admit I was never in MC but I did attend a church during my teenage years that had the same indoctrination/cult type themes to it. It was a word of faith church based in Alexandria, Louisiana (the whole name it/claim it, health and wealth movement that’s still robbing people of their money and their faith even to this day). The pastor had his moments when he seemed like he genuinely loved the people at the church but I soon discovered that he would show love toward you as long as you did what he wanted/told you to do. Free thought/expression was not looked upon favorably there. And heaven forbid you asked too many questions about the motives of the pastor or leadership. They would make you feel like you were satan himself sent to sabotage the church. I won’t even get into what they would say to you if they felt you weren’t tithing enough. Funny thing about it all was while the pastor was demanding so much strict loyality and holiness to the church from his congregation he was involved in an adultress relationship with a woman in the church. The church underwent a complete split because of it back in 1999 then he went and made a pass at a different woman a few years ago.

    Anyways, I was able to break free without becoming brainwashed but some people I knew were not so fortunate (my parents, especialy my dad, still feels wounded even though he will never admit it). It wasn’t until I proceeded through my early 20’s, moved out of state to go to college, and starting attending my uncle’s church which taught me about relationship instead of religion that I even realized I was being indoctrinated by that word of faith church.

    I’m now in my early 30’s and long ago I came to the realization that the way I experienced church early in life and I imagine how you experienced it in MC is NOT how Jesus is to be represented. God loves us so much through his son Jesus and he desires to be in an intimate/loving relationship with us. He doesn’t want to control us or dominate us. He cares for us more than we will ever know, ask, or imagine. Religion preaches control/domination. Relationship exhibts love and understanding.

    I may never meet you face to face but I want you to know that I will be standing with you in spirit. There are a lot of wounded people in the world becasue of toxic churchs and unhealthy religious orginiztions. So I just want you to know that I love you as my sister in Christ and more importantly God loves you.

Comments are closed.