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Author Topic: LOVEBOMBING and Other Strange Relationships in GCx Churches  (Read 916 times)
Janet Easson Martin
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« on: April 28, 2019, 01:15:31 pm »

LOVEBOMBING and Other Strange Relationships
in GCx Churches



“These people [who distort the Good News] are devoted to you, but not in a good way. They don't want you to associate with me so that you will be devoted only to them.”
Galatians 4:17   GNT


As mentioned in the post, “Alienation in GCx Churches”, the word devoted (or zealous) here is used to mean “eager to possess”.  It is one thing to be genuinely interested in someone to learn about them and their actual interests, and come to care about them.  It is something else to pay much attention to a person with the motive of using the friendship to gain the approval of others, and ultimately to win possession of them to your group. This second type of interest was sadly often modus operandi in GCx Churches.  However, I believe where the Holy Spirit was able to work, he did give us love for one another.  So, when a lot of us were new and not yet fully submitted to the oppressive pressure to please and impress GCx men, just God; we practiced the first type of healthy interest toward others which slowly grows.  Then, as false teaching and indoctrination took over our lives we succumbed to quick “fake” friendships just to get any warm body in the church because that is what gave us value and importance in that greedy church.  

Here are some of the people who have spoken out about the spectacle of “lovebombing” in GCx Churches:



I was a part of the church as they decided to make the transition from Mosaic to H2O [GCx Church group at Ohio State University]... Friendships are formed STRONGLY and QUICKLY, and it can feel like "home." This is called "love bombing”.
-XianJaneway


The key is getting to the basis for most of the relationships in the (authoritarian) GCx franchises. Speaking from experience, these relationships are contingent on how well you support the franchise and really, nothing else. As many of us can attest to, you will likely lose a number of relationships if you decide to leave as these relationships had no foundation built on Christ to begin with.
-boboso


Things went really well for a while. I made lots of friends and started reading and learning about God for the first time in my life. But over the past couple of years there has been a disturbing trend. There were certain times over the years that I would get the feeling from a few members that I was nothing but a project whose value and worth was measured by how many activities I attended.
-GB


More of the strangeness.... The pastor who's inner circle we made it into (you were considered very special) told a "sister" and I that we were to be best friends.  It was stated just like that.  Of course, I was drinking the Kool-Aid and spent years trying to make that happen, as did she.  We had no natural connection and not a lot in common.  But we told people we were best friends.
-Scout


...realizing that the outward appearance of the seeming harmony, unity, friendliness and caring is how they are supposed to act, not truly a manifestation of inner peace and joy that comes from following Jesus.
-wisemind


Once a man has chosen you, you are expected to like him and have a quick courtship and a quick engagement. Once you have your wedding, it would be a noble gesture if you invited people you hardly know who are younger so they can hear the example of how God has blessed you in the system. ... That is why the church I was part of used so many events where testimonials were shared so as to advance the culture.  ...people can be subtly influenced in a group setting to adopt a group think that may or may not relate to God's call on their life. ...determining valuable friendships is truly indicative of the problem within GCx. At the initial level, you matter to the extent that you follow the plan and respond to the invitation to events and church (where you are initially showered with so much love).
-MarthaH



« Last Edit: April 28, 2019, 07:55:28 pm by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
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« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2019, 03:53:46 pm »

This one was a mainstay.  This “frantic” practice was ridiculous, and recalling the reality of it’s irritation here makes one laugh.  Members didn’t want any potential “disciples” (who might give value to their existence in the group) to get away.  Your worth was in how many new people (believers or not) you could hold captive.


I blended my thinking into theirs until I couldn’t tell the difference. I forgot what was me and what was them. And I never questioned. And I tried to get more people to join. ...I was putting on the Sunday Morning Act which was to ACT really nice and friendly and welcoming so new people would want to come back. I began to notice how if I talked to people on Sunday morning who were CORE members, their eyes would be scanning over my head to look for a new person.
-Agatha L’Orange
« Last Edit: April 28, 2019, 08:34:41 pm by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Janet Easson Martin
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« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2019, 10:17:20 am »

All is not as it seems AT FIRST -


At first, the church seemed wonderful -- the people were so loving and it seemed unconditional. Over time, I noticed that I was blamed if anything went wrong in my life. ... Reproof was a normal almost weekly event if you didn't do everything leadership wanted you to do.  I was reproved if I didn't get counsel to go visit my family or heavens— [if] I wanted to have a Bible Study in my home and did not get the Elders approval.
-wastedyearsthere

« Last Edit: May 01, 2019, 10:19:05 am by Janet Easson Martin » Logged

For grace is given not because we have done good works, but in order that we may be able to do them.        - Saint Augustine
Huldah
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« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2019, 12:40:20 pm »

At first, the church seemed wonderful -- the people were so loving and it seemed unconditional. Over time, I noticed that I was blamed if anything went wrong in my life. ... Reproof was a normal almost weekly event if you didn't do everything leadership wanted you to do.
-wastedyearsthere

Whoah! At first when I started reading that, I wondered, "Did I write that?" Because I could have written it! Then I saw it was from wastedyearsthere. Initial lovebombing, followed eventually by constant reproof and disapproval. That was definitely the pattern.
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