First, I apologize ahead of time if this rant takes strange twists and turns or has a lot of spelling errors. My mom and dad will be here any minute and I REALLY want to write this.
Second, I have a healthy respect for Pentecostal and Evangelical people, it won't seem like it in a minute, but I really do. Something about their practice of their beliefs reaches out to a large number of people who would be lost, morally and spiritually. So even though I don't want to be in the same room with them, they have their place.
Thirdly, I want to make it very clear that I respect everyone's right to believe or not to believe, practice or not practice as they chose. It is not my place to judge your spiritual walk. Honestly. But you might get offended if you read on, so fair warning. NOW....ON WITH THE SHOW!!
Hubby came home last night from THE RETREAT. All morning at church, and on FB and via emails and phone calls, people had been telling me that Hubby was just "glowing", he was "ecstatic", "happier" than they had ever seen him. They all went out to a special late night candlelight ceremony on Saturday to honor him. I was getting scared...had my Hubby been indoctrinated? Had he been changed? Had the cult infiltrated his normally rock solid faith and perverted him?
HELL NAH!!! (sorry I'm yelling so much). He did come home unable to get the music track out of his head. He keeps singing some Elijah song. He also came home loaded down with bags of goodies that he received. Essentially he was at a Vacation Bible School for adults. He did find out why it was so cult-like, however. The group was run by the Pentecostals. It was supposed to be non-demoninational, but it really wasn't.
So, highlights of his trip:
The spritual Pentecostal leader made fun of Muslims and the way they pray, I don't know a lot about Muslim prayers, but have you ever heard the high-pitched keening way they pray? The leader mocked that and said it wasn't prayer. However, he was the same leader who asked people if God have given them their "own, secret prayer language yet?" (aka speaking in tongues). It was so forced on people that one of Hubby's cell, I mean, roommates felt like he was failing because he wasn't receiving the Spirit enough to fall-out.
Then there was the group that was trying to show how God needed to be a propeller in your life. So they drew a picture of a slanted infinity with a giant stick emerging from the top center. Go ahead, I don't have a scanner, so I'll wait while you draw it. Do you see it yet? Then the people kept saying the stick was the "shaft of God" as they kept rubbing their hand up and down the picture! Hubby was having enough trouble not breaking into laughter when he looked around and saw two other pastors from our denomination shaking with laughter. He lost it. The Shaft of God, eh?
But possibly the funniest thing occured after he came home and was reading the comments on my blog. Anonymous said, "Hmmmm, sounds like "True Blood" where Jason Stackhouse got hooked up with some scary 'fang haters' who hid behind Jesus. Wow! I'm kind of speechless! I mean it just wouldn't be a secret hide away retreat if he doesn't come back with a special secret cross with mystery symbols on the back or maybe a spin ring that when it lines up right signals flocks of angels to stab demons . . . oh, wait that's "Supernatural" with Sam and Dean." Hubby fled from the room in laughter only to return with a....SECRET CROSS!!! I kid you not. He's only supposed to wear it at future Retreat meetings! Hubby also watches True Blood and said he knew the episode Anon was talking about and so it made it even funnier because he/she was RIGHT! There's even a secret Jesus catch phrase that they use with each other. I won't repeat it here because I don't want to inflict the wrath of the cult on myself.
So anyway, I fought off attack after attack of the Retreaters while Hubby was gone. They just don't understand why I don't want to go. Hubby even told them to never expect me to go, but they insist on praying for my heart to change. Yea, that's going to happen! Hubby, sadly, is kind of stuck now. He is thinking about volunteering to be a spritual leader to offset some of the radicalism, bigotry and just plain bad theology that has become of this group. Some of me appluauds him for wanting to make a change and try to reset this group. Part of me thinks its egotistical on his part to think he needs to be the hero. But the biggest part of me is scared that maybe, just maybe they got to him and this is his way of continuing in it without me knowing his true reasons.
Maybe he did drink the kool-aid!