Monday, July 5, 2010

The gift of dreams (more on Twelve Tribes...)

God helps me in my dreams, especially in dealing with community stuff. I have very vivid dreams of things I don't think about during waking hours. I dream about situations that help me understand what happened at the community and why people became as they did. Why it became about laws and regulations, though that is not everyone's heart there, nor intent. The law just trapped them, as it does, and many fight against it, as I tried to. Many there do have a fervent love for our Savior that is altogether genuine. I thought about all these things as I woke up this morning.
I thought about what I missed. Definitely some of my friends. Definitely yearning  to work together for a cause higher than all of us; definitely serving others together; the separateness from the complex world culture;  the eating of food that we harvested with our own hands, or whom friends harvested and prepared, the dancing celebrations. The Spirit was there too sometimes as it is everywhere where people believe.
But there is much more I don't miss- the accusations and put downs, the constant assumptions or suspicions about my motives of heart, the questioning and challenging of all my prior beliefs and experiences. It was beginning to want to brainwash me, in fact some there believed I needed to be brain "washed". In most of their eyes I had just begun regeneration- I had not REALLY been saved until I was baptized into their group. And I sort of fell for that for a short time. I wanted to fit there because they seemed so devoted and genuine and they seemed to love me, and I loved them. But they did want to change EVERYTHING about me. I was a "newborn" baby to them, when I joined. My prior 15 years of faith mattered NOTHING. I didn't want to see this was true.
I don't believe EVERYONE thought this way, but the vast majority did.  I came to know a few who didn't and they are the reason I stayed for as long as I did. I loved them and they loved me as best as we could, and of course, I miss them.
I don't think most there want to be trapped in a stale religion that entraps, but many don't know any other way of life (like all those born and raised in the community). They see the world as a cage, not just because they've been told it's a cage. They themselves see the corruption, many have experienced it, only to return to community life. Many thoughtful people there weigh where the corruption is worse- is it in the community or the world? I weighed that same thing. We all want wholesome lives that reflect our Savior. The world entraps and corrupts, when we let it. But the world is EVERYWHERE. We can't escape it on this earth. We are in it no matter WHERE we are at, we are just not to be of it. And that is the call for true believers everywhere, always; it has been and will be for all of history- To not let the world in us (the corrupted world under the prince of the air...)
But his yoke is easy and his burden light. And He is the one that keeps us, saves us, rescues us, because we are his own and no one can say otherwise.


lionwoman said...

Manuela, religious community can indeed be a poignant mixture of good and bad. It seems like friendship and community is ever changing and always temporary for many of us. The 'world' really is everywhere - inside or outside the box.

Manuela said...

Hi Amy, thanks for your feedback. It takes a toll sometimes, all the changes, and the way things are, as you related.
Finding our place in the mess can be so tricky. I need to learn to be more often content with being "different".
We were made to be together and "belong" but it seems so many things often get in the way. Sometimes I don't understand it at all...

foak said...

Just remember
Yahshua never told anyone that they had to be in a community.
If it is eternal life you are looking for Yahshua answered that question over and over again.

Luk 10:25-28
A teacher of the Law came up and tried to trap Jesus. "Teacher," he asked, "what must I do to receive eternal life?"
Jesus answered him, "What do the Scriptures say? How do you interpret them?"
The man answered, " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind'; and 'Love your neighbor as you love yourself.' "
"You are right," Jesus replied; "do this and you will live."

Yahsua also told us the path is narrow and difficult.
Some can find it in the Twelve Tribes, for others it is stifling.
It matters not where you are because Yahshua also said:

Luk 17:20-21
Some Pharisees asked Jesus when the Kingdom of God would come. His answer was, "The Kingdom of God does not come in such a way as to be seen.
No one will say, 'Look, here it is!' or, 'There it is!'; because the Kingdom of God is within you."

God will not abandon you if you are not a member of the Twelve Tribes or even if you are a member of what some call a cult.

The truth is that what you are looking for you have always had inside of you.
Just like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, She had what she needed to get home before she even started the journey.
But take the journey we must and when we finally start on the road back home it matters not where we find ourselves, God is there.

Manuela said...

do not presume to know what I have experienced, believe or long for. Especially in light of the fact that I don't know who you are...

No, Yashua never said we had to live in such and such a community (as in a certain kind). He didn't make specifications...BUT he demonstrated that we are to live IN community, as brotherly love creates community. That's what he showed in how he lived with his disciples. And that's what I believe all his children were made for and long for, and what motivates them, sometimes to foolish actions. But once, say, two people are re-connected to their creator they can truly connect with one another. Perhaps the reason for all the disconnection between people, or the lack of real intimacy, is because of the disconnection to God himself. And what separates us from him...?

But community is a result of love and not the other way around! Jesus said the wolves would come. He's keeping his vineyard, though. And his vineyard is not merely "The Twelve Tribes community," as most of the people there believe. Nor is it this "church" or that movement, or that group, etc.... and you can be connected to people you don't necessarily live with, or even share a country with. Still that doesn't take away the longing to see their face, to talk to them in person...

These are just my thoughts.

humanissue said...

Am i to presume that someone that went to live with the Twelve Tribes is not looking for the things i mentioned?

Do you understand the story of the prodigal son?
It is the story of Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz as well.

I like the wizard of Oz version because a child can understand it.

I know the Twelve Tribes well by the way.
I bought some bread from them yesterday.
I have known some of them for 30yrs.
My son and i have a great deal of love and respect for some of the families that we know.

I am responding to your blog because it reminds me of myself and many others i have known over the years that have struggled to move on with their lives after leaving the TT Community.

What you are going through is completely normal and predictable.
I have talked to hundreds of people on message boards about this over the years and the stories are the same.

i was not supposed to even live if i left them.
I was around in the days when they believed once someone was baptized by them that if they left they would die some how.
I had it happen to someone i knew.

I was hoping to lend a hand on the journey home.
If you would rather i did not respond to your posts i will stop.
I do not want to impose.

Manuela said...

I hope I wasn't too harsh in response to the previous comment...
Foak, you did share some very good insights.

I was just thinking that, in answer to my own question above, I do believe nothing can separate us from God (who is love), once we are in Yashua. NOTHING... as it does say. And this is such comfort.... It doesn't always feel that way for whatever reasons. But I'm glad it's the ultimate truth that transcends all the complexities we face or create... What a friend he is...

wow, I'm having a conversation with myself here!: ) I'm gonna go take a nap, cause I went to bed close to 3:00 am last night

Manuela said...

I still don't think we are to presume anything about anyone, even if we share a common experience, because each person is unique and different.

Sue said...

Great to hear more about your experience, Manu. I do not think any of it will be wasted, painful though it was. I can so hear and see your desire and thirst for community. How strong that desire is, to live in community. Such an amazing thing, how everything works when people are living in harmony together. And so the struggle continues ... :)

Manuela said...

Yes, the struggle goes on...

Aida said...

Manuela, I know this is an old post but I was looking at your blog and this one caught my attention. As Sue said, the desire for community is strong and losing the friendship of those we love is difficult. I guess what’s bothering me is how Facebook has changed my relationships. While I’ve made new friends that I probably would never have met anywhere else, I was missing the closeness I once had with other friends.

I think we all desire community and close relationships but they seem to allude us at times. Then, when we’ve had them and they’re taken away, it does hurt. I suppose we need to be thankful for the opportunities we have to develop intimacy and enjoy them because sometimes they end more quickly than we would like.

However, as Sue said, nothing that we experience is ever wasted. We often don’t see how God will use them while we’re in the middle of them but he will in time.

Love you, my friend.

Manuela said...

"I guess what’s bothering me is how Facebook has changed my relationships. While I’ve made new friends that I probably would never have met anywhere else, I was missing the closeness I once had with other friends."

I really know what you are saying...! I have much more to say about facebook... but I'll wait till I can get my thoughts more together. I do believe it spreads people too thin, distracts them, and does encourage low-commitment relationships (as someone else commented on my blog). It can be very much about me, me, me- someone else told me the other day at Maggie's school.
And it clearly emphasizes quantity over quality...
but like you said to me, facebook is more a result of our lack of real connections and not the cause (I hope I quoted that right...)
Sometimes i would love to just blame everything on facebook :) Heck, why not! :D
Anyway, thanks for relating.