Rewriting My Story – Part Two

The last post ended with a list things I believe now versus beliefs from my previous life. (No, I’m not talking about reincarnation!) These are the differences in my life and belief system in the last 13 years.

I thought of a few more things to add to that list:

  • I went from believing a Godly woman had to look and dress a certain way to having total freedom in a modest appealing appearance.
  • I went from looking like a sister worker to not looking like one at all. I have short hair, wear make-up and jewelry and very seldom wear dresses or skirts. Now I feel feminine and pretty and, most importantly, I feel totally at peace about each of these areas. (Believe me, I prayed my way through all of those steps.)
  • I went from believing God only listened to and approved of Hymns Old & New as music for church to experiencing Him speaking to me very powerfully through all kinds of Christian music.
  • I went from believing Christmas and Easter were worldly religious holidays not to be acknowledged at all with any spiritual connection, to loving and cherishing and celebrating them with the body of Christ. I find these days extremely meaningful and precious.
  • And speaking of Christmas, I went from a belief of NO decorations to now creating an even more beautiful home that time of year with a tree, lights (inside and outside), candles and decorations.
  • I went from reading only the King James Version of the Bible to enjoying reading from a number of translations.
  • From my “other reading” consisting only of workers notes, the Readers Digest (yawn!) and some non-fiction and fiction, to discovering Christian authors, blogs and watching some of my favorite Christian teachers on TV.
    Yes, I do have a TV. And yes, there is a lot of stupid stuff on there and certainly a lot of non-edifying stuff and things that disturb my peace. I don’t watch those kinds of programs but I do enjoy just relaxing for a while with some programs.
  • Where I used to condemn all other preachers, pastors or ministers who are not workers to hell, (As if I had the power to do that! How arrogant of me that was.) I believe now that there are many who are sincere and are truly seeking to follow Christ.
  • I no longer believe only friends and workers are going to heaven or that I have to go to meetings to go to heaven.
  • I used to believe communion could only take place in a home but now I focus instead on what communion is, what it means and who it is about (Jesus) rather than on where.
  • From going to meetings to not going to meetings.
  • From going to church to not going to church. I’m not sure where I am with this one yet; it’s hard to go right now for some reason. I am comforted by the fact that I truly believe God understands why those of us who used to go to meetings find it difficult at times to go to another church.
  • From knowing the friends and workers better than I knew God to spending years developing my relationship with God in a fresh and new way.
  • From praying only on my knees (except for a meeting setting) to praying sitting on a chair, in bed, while I’m driving, in the shower, at work, on a walk, in the middle of a conversation, outside and inside, night and day. (Romans 12:12)
  • From believing I was saved by works to believing in the Gospel of Grace. I seek not to abuse His grace but remember the huge debt of gratitude I owe to His saving grace.

I think this is a good idea of where I am at these days! 🙂 Most of the friends and workers might not recognize me outwardly now, but I hope they wouldn’t recognize me inwardly either.The unhappy, frustrated Darla is gone; especially the one many of you saw those last few years I was in the Work. I am a work in progress, and like Paul wrote, I haven’t yet attained to everything I strive to be but God is working within and slowly refining my heart and spirit to be like gold. I know a freedom within I never knew was possible. I have made new friends and have a few close friends that still attend the meetings. I will write next about what has been going on in my life in other areas in the next installment.

To be continued again…

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12 thoughts on “Rewriting My Story – Part Two

  1. Hi Darla!
    It was great seeing you today:) what a surprise! You looked great and were glowing. I am proud of you for being true to yourself and finding your own way. I, for one, do not believe there is one right way, as we were taught growing up. I always, since I was little, felt that there were good people in all religions, races, places in the world and I also remember being other people, in other lives. These little memories help me to know there is much more to life than meets the eye. I also have this deep feeling of connectedness to all beings on this planet and off. Hopefully someday the rest of the world can catch up to that unity and be able to let go of the dogma of religion and truly be free. Thank you for making a blog so that we can find out what was going on with you. Love and good thoughts to you.

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    • Tami,
      It was so wonderful seeing you, Tracy and your mom and the babies yesterday! Just did my heart good. If you read any of the first posts on this blog, you will see how I got to where I am today! A LOT of things have changed since those Great Falls days for both of us!! Praise God for that!

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    • Hello Tami (Benjamin), so comforting to read your words! I think you and I could have quite a conversation! I am true to myself now, after believing in MYSELF, but what a journey it has been through the archives of dogma and religion in order to see that the spiritual is the most powerful! All my life I have “seen” other people that I do not know in my “third eye”, and two of them I recognised as myself! I have just recently finished the book “Soul Survivor”, about the young boy who was having memories of his life in World War 2, a great read! These memories or “glimpses” we have certainly put everything in it’s rightful place…..we are just a drop in the bucket of something huge. It’s so precious to feel connected to everyone and everything also. A big defining moment for me was walking into the grocery store one awakened morning and feeling “one” and loving everyone unconditionally. What separates man from one another is so trivial compared to what spiritually binds them all together!!! I do believe the time will come when all will be united in love, it’s the story of our soul!!

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  2. I’ve noticed that over the last year of thanking God for the Cross, the meeting I attend has started doing so also. They didn’t used to do so. That encouraged me that perhaps one does have a quiet influence for good.

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    • Many times I have wanted to bail and go find the faithful church in Philadelphia, but God has said to me “No, you belong to the church in Sardis, and you will stay and strengthen the things that remain, that are ready to die.”

      If we don’t, who will?

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      • Thanks Donna for this very enlightening paragraph! I too feel a force asking me to help turn this “Sardis like church” to Truth. I read a great book on Revelations once and all these churches are examples of current churches in the world at any one time. I like how in my Contemporary English Version of the New Testament it writes “I know what you are doing. Everyone may think you are alive, but you are dead. Wake up! You have only a little strength left and it’s almost gone. So try to become stronger. I have found that you are not completely obeying God…..”. Right there is the clincher. To obey God means to become Love in all things, which means there is absolutely no self-righteousness and exclusiveness as a man-made church. The strength of this church are the people that cannot abide this sin and they will teach others and this church can become one of many on the earth that belong to the universal Body of Christ.

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  3. It’s amazing how many of our “rewritten stories” are so similar. I am so thankful that God opened my eyes several years ago to what it meant to be saved, and that Christ is enough. I too enjoy preachers who aren’t afraid to speak the whole truth: John MacArthur, Charles Stanley, Chuck Swindoll and a few others. I listen to a sermon in the morning most days during my quiet time before anyone else is up. I also enjoy books by Christian authors, Christian music on the radio, and the company of other believers. I still go to meeting, though I have let down the pretenses of professingness.

    It took awhile, but I’m at peace with my place and feel a responsibility to my brothers and sisters there who all seem to love me. I am careful to keep my piece said all about Jesus and what HE had to say. I never mention “the truth” nor do I extoll the virtues of the ministry. So it is possible to be “revived” and still go to meeting. Of course, this means being pretty much ignored by the workers, but that is not necessarily a bad thing. It means not being in the “in” crowd, but that’s ok too. We don’t go to gospel meetings or Wed night meeting. I just take Jesus with me every Sunday to meeting, and it is now an edifying time. I feel that everyone there is there to honor Christ. Maybe just one revived person in a meeting can help change the climate. So far God has not opened the door for me to do anything else, so I’m content to stay. Maybe there are others out there in the same position I’m in.

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      • I was thinking the other day that Charles Stanley must be getting pretty old, and if he passed away, I would be pretty sad. I’m glad to know about his son. I’ll check it out.

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        • Thanks for your honest post Donna. I agree with everything you said, there is a type of “silent questioning distance” that one feels from some. I too, never ever mention “church words” like the way, the truth (although I will say Truth), professing, saved, lost eternity, God’s family or God’s children. To stay true to my opened eyes one I have adopted a new vocabulary, which is both highly spiritual and always about Love. I never ever mention any worker, or say “the friends”, or put the meeting home on a pedestal. At this stage of my journey, I am thinking of not attending any gospel meetings that are preached by workers that uphold our church is the only one in the entire world that is right, or uphold the ministry as the only ministry. Time will tell, and it’s one day at a time. I agree with you that the fellowship on Sunday can be edifying and a spiritual help for all there, even if one just gets one or two crumbs.

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    • You may be interested to know Donna that even though appearances mean nothing (except when they are total vanity or total piousness) that I also look different to every other woman in our meeting. I dress for the meeting like I dress when I leave the house for anything…well presented, feminine, and individual. My husband has been a wonderful support in all this! There comes a time when you just cannot abide the dress code (especially the hair) any longer. It is such complete freedom to take Jesus to the meeting as I am. Bliss.

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      • I am with you on the dress and hair issues Chrissy and I know several women who are in agreement with the way we are seeing these things. There is so much emphasis put on these things that it is ridiculous. I have decides that I am done with feeling like we have to be a cookie cutter image of each other. When we start putting these expectations on each other then what happens? Yes. We automatically start sizing up and judging each other ! This is wrong on so many levels. There is such a freedom when we get to that point where we can say that Christ is our focus and not the length of our hair or our dress !

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