Please don’t hate me because I think differently from you on some things, or because I don’t celebrate Jesus Christ in all the same ways in which you do, or because my understanding of what scripture teaches may be a little bit different from yours. For, we both claim to believe in Jesus Christ, and in God the Father and the Holy Spirit. We both believe that Jesus died on a cross to save us from our sins; to free us from sin, and to give us eternal life with God. And, we both desire to see others come to faith in Christ, too. So, why do you get so angry when what I believe is different from what you believe? Why do you “slam the door in my face,” defriend or deride me on Facebook, perhaps unfollow me on Twitter, ignore me and avoid me out in public places, or treat me like I just committed some horrible crime? Why do you mock me, gossip about me behind my back, and make false judgments about me just because I believe differently from you? Have I now become your enemy by proclaiming the truth as I believe it to be, and as I believe scripture teaches it? Aren’t you are my brother or sister in Christ? … The Lord Jesus led me to read Galatians 4 (vv. 8-11 ESV). Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods. But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more? You observe days and months and seasons and years! I am afraid I may have labored over you in vain. There are multiple lessons the Lord has taught me, in particular over the past 13 years, regarding “weak and worthless” principles of the world which were ingrained in my life from childhood and which he wanted out of my life. So, with each revelation he gave me regarding these ingrained principles, I listened to what he taught me, and I obeyed him, but sometimes to the strong disapproval of other Christians who still hold strong to some of the things which God has removed from my life. Flag-Waving For one, I was a flag-waving, flag-pledging patriot who sang the national anthem with hand over heart, with great enthusiasm. I believed the USA was a Christian nation, and I believed what I saw and read in the news, that it was true. I believed what the Republican political platform said I should believe, and I voted according to that platform, that is, until… The Lord opened my eyes, and he showed me the real truth about the US government, and what they are doing across the globe in conquering other nations, killing innocents, and confiscating and destroying property not their own. He showed me that I could not trust our leaders to tell the truth, or the mainstream news media, either. He taught me that our government works for “the beast” and that they are instrumental in bringing “the beast” to the world throne. And, he taught me that to pledge allegiance to the US flag is to vow fidelity to this evil government, which I should not ever do. So, I no longer pledge to the flag of the USA, and I don’t vote in our elections, because our votes don’t count anyway, because our government is not the real government of the USA. Rather, a shadow government of the Elite of the world run these United States of America, and they choose which puppets to put in office, anyway. And, I no longer believe what is in the news, but I ask the Lord to show me what is true and what is false. Institutional Church I also was a member of more than one institutional church over the years of my life, and my husband and I were even church planters twice, and we did the 501c3 not-for-profit tax exempt incorporation of our fellowships, because that is what we were told we needed to do to become a “church.” We also followed our leaders’ advice in using marketing schemes in order to gain people to our church fellowships, but all the work we did in marketing our “church” never led anyone to faith in Jesus Christ, and it only convinced one person to join our fellowship, in this last church-plant effort. Then, the Lord Jesus opened my eyes to see the institutional incorporated church from his vantage point. He sees it like he saw the money-changers in his temple, who were turning the house of God, which was to be a house of prayer, into a place of business. And, that is exactly what has happened to so much of the church here in America. By incorporating under the federal government of the US, the body of Christ has been turned into a business and is marketed just like any other business, using human techniques, and often ignoring the Holy Spirit and his guidance. Not only this, but by incorporating, the church has partnered with this evil government which is working for “the beast,” and in doing what we read about in Revelation 13. But, even if they weren’t working for the beast, they are still the ungodly, and we are not to partner with the unrighteous, but we are to come out from among them and to be separate so that we don’t share in their sins or in their punishment, and because there is no fellowship between light and darkness (See: 2 Co. 6:14-18; Rev. 18:4-5). So, I did what God said for me to do, and I came out from the institutional church which is married to the US government, and I fellowship with other believers outside the walls of institutional Christianity. And, I share what the Word teaches on these subjects of not being unequally yoked together with unbelievers and of not turning the body of Christ, the people of God, God’s house, into a business of human-making. Holidays I used to celebrate all the American holidays or traditional celebrations, but we never did the Santa thing. But, we did celebrate Halloween, 4th of July, Christmas, Easter and Thanksgiving. We eventually phased out Halloween, because of the evil in it, but we still held on to all the other celebrations. Then, as I became aware of the true roots of our nation and of the true nature of our government and what all they are doing throughout the world, I could no longer celebrate the 4th of July, nor could I pledge allegiance to the flag nor sing patriotic songs. Then, the Lord began to make me uncomfortable about celebrating Christmas and Easter. I began to see how Jesus Christ was being upstaged by Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny on these holidays or celebrations. And, Jesus began to open my eyes to see how he sees these celebrations, which are a mixture of pagan celebrations and religious celebrations, which God forbade his people from participating in all throughout biblical history. I began to see how these celebrations were not really about Jesus Christ but they were about buying gifts we couldn’t afford to give to people who didn’t really need or want them, in many cases. And, there was so much greed and commercialism involved in this celebration of Christmas, in particular. And, Easter was more about getting new (or used) clothes and Easter baskets and eggs than it was about giving honor to our Lord who died on a cross for us. So, my husband and I evaluated all of this together, and together we made the decision to stop celebrating these holidays, too. We have not yet made a decision about Thanksgiving, although, in my experience, that one seems to be more about people stuffing their faces full of food, oftentimes until they are sick to the stomach, and it often seems to have little to do with truly being thankful to the Lord, yet I realize that not everyone has the same experiences. Conclusion As I have become aware of these various institutions of men which were ingrained in me from childhood, and of what my Lord wanted my response to be concerning them, and I have obeyed him, I have also been faced with rejection, anger, rage, and even hate from other believers in Jesus for whom these institutions are sacred. Not everyone has responded this way, mind you, but there have been quite a few who did. And, this is what prompted my opening statements. I have just seen so many Christians (or professing Christians) react so angrily to anyone not following these traditions, and I don’t believe that we, as Christians, should treat one another that way. Not worshiping the government is not to be equated with not worshiping God, although many Christians do equate these. Not celebrating Christmas or Easter is also not to be equated with not celebrating my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I celebrate him every day! And, not attending an institutional church is also not to be equated with forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, for we can and should assemble together outside the walls of institutional religion. So, you can choose to judge me, reject me, hate me, unfriend or unfollow me or whatever, but I must obey my Lord and do what he says. I hope you will stick around, though, and that we can still enjoy fellowship together. For, our goal together should be the salvation of souls for Jesus Christ and to see the church walking in the ways of the Lord, following him in all his ways. For Our Nation / An Original Work September 11, 2012 Bombs are bursting. Night is falling. Jesus Christ is gently calling You to follow Him in all ways. Trust Him with your life today. Make Him your Lord and your Savior. Turn from your sin. Follow Jesus. He will forgive you of your sin; Cleanse your heart, made new within. Men betraying: Our trust fraying. On our knees to God we’re praying, Seeking God to give us answers That are only found in Him. God is sovereign over all things. Nothing from His mind escaping. He has all things under His command, And will work all for good. Jesus Christ is gently calling You to follow Him in all ways. Men deceiving: we’re believing In our Lord, and interceding For our nation and its people To obey their God today. He is our hope for our future. For our wounds He offers suture. He is all we need for this life. Trust Him with your life today. Friday, December 1, 2017, 3:34 p.m. – Thank you, Jesus, for what you have taught me over the years regarding obedience to you.