The other day, one of my friends posted on my Facebook Wall: I thought you were still with the group in Texas...what happened?
I responded, the simple version of my story is this: I have chosen to meet with the Texas Assembly and attend events and meetings when I feel like it and when I want to. I will no longer feel obligated to be there 5 times a week or condemned for not attending. I will continue to fellowship with other people outside "The Group of Christians" we have known, as I have since last September 2012 with in home Bible Study Groups and since December 2012 by attending various churches in the area. I am not looking for a church home or a new place to meet and plant my feet. I simply want to meet other believers and share in their lives! I want to learn more about God and develop my faith in Him, not in people, not in rules, and do not wish to have relationships simply based off of approval. I want to love as God has loved me, just as I am. The Group of Christians that we have known and I have associated with my entire life will no longer be the only place I get spiritual encouragement and will no longer be the only place I give to charity, it will be one of the ways, but no longer my only way. This decision has affected many friendships. When we get to heaven it will not just be the "people at the meeting hall" or "the group of christians we know" and I don't believe anymore that God asks us to become our own denomination by not including anyone else who doesn't believe or walk as we do. Not for a second. Quite to the contrary! He demonstrated in real life how he wants us to be and we haven't followed in His footsteps. I want to be like Jesus, different from those in the assembly. At the same time, I want to love all these people I have fellowshipped with my entire life even if they don't know how to love me back, even if they are cold/rude/mean to me because of changes I have made/am making or do in my life that they do not agree with, even if some of their teachings are wrong, even if their relationships are only based off of approval, criteria, and rules. I was raised in this culture and treated others the same way and wish to be compassionate. I want to be understanding and pray that they will grow and see God for who He really is. The last year has been an incredible journey of learning more about my Savior, who He is, what He wants of me, and how He wants me to be. It is my desire to live this out to the fullest and that means some things must be left behind as I press on towards the goal on this journey with Jesus Christ! God LOVES each and every person. Those who have given their heart to Him and those who have not. God is bigger than man. His ways are perfect. His love is unconditional. He has called us to be just like Him. We won't be able to without putting Him first, but this is our calling. I feel like I am starting all over in my faith and belief in God, this at times can be discouraging and at the same time can be inspiring! He is ALIVE and my LOVE for Him has grown beyond what I dreamed possible. Press on serving Him [the name of my friend] and you will be blessed!