This post may not mean anything to you, unless you are a former Adventist minister like I am or familiar with the Seventh-day Adventist church.
With the advent of Facebook came groups for former Seventh-day Adventist. I joined a few and read a lot of the posts. However, it wasn’t long before I realized that many of the former Adventist group members merely express their rage and anger against everything Adventist.
It doesn’t seem healthy to me.
I think healthy would be, I wish I wouldn’t have joined but now I am finding peace at knowing this and being here or whatever. I think showing all the hate and anger tells more about those posting than the ones they claim to have formerly been part of.
I’m guessing no one in their judgment-day appearance before the Lord is going to actually claim their expressions of hatred for Adventism as proof that they multiplied they talent.
I’m also guessing that no one at an alcoholic support group rages on about their anger against the liquor store managers or the whiskey production procedures. If I understand their healing aims, it’s to take personal responsibility for their actions, not blaming the alcohol industry.
I left the Adventist Church as a member and as a minister in December of 1999. (I share that story at my church page here). I have never regretted that decision and have been very grateful for the way my Lord has both led me in my Christian faith and amazed at the pastoral ministry opportunities available to me since.
I enjoy having SDA friends and still hearing from my past SDA parishioners. If I had not left when I did it is very likely that I would leave the denomination today because of its liberal slide into the social justice issues that, at least from an outside view, appears to have risen to a mission above the sufficiency of Scripture.
I have been most grateful that my Lord led me through the Seventh-day Adventist church because it truly has shaped my passion for God’s Word. It has also confused me as to why other formers can seemingly reject their Adventist background so vehemently without regard for the Lord’s purpose.
I finally left the former Adventist Facebook groups because I had enough herd criticism and obsession during my days in the SDA church and finding it in its redirected form among formers toward Adventism strikes me as hypocritical.
It seems to me that if you’re resting in Christ, you have an intimate knowledge of His grace and would be less likely to be obsessed with another’s faults.
In my 20’s I worked at a temporary job slinging metal doors from a conveyor belt to a rack where other workers secured hinges, but I don’t recall complaining about that in my 30’s or 40’s or 50’s, I just moved on to more meaningful employment. My time at that hard labor door factory makes me more appreciable of my work today.
If I was to start a Former Metal Door Factory Worker Facebook group, I don’t think I would want it to digress to a metal door hater group. Maybe a how to transition to a more meaningful work group, but I don’t think there is any thing healthy about obsessive fault-finding.
Who of us are still vocally finding-fault about our childhood days of wearing diapers? I’ve never heard a teenager express their disdain for the days they wore diapers, yet some formers fret over the SDA beliefs as if they are still trying to convince themselves that they made the right decision in leaving. I guess it’s easier to complain about who we once were than to walk by faith in where we are now.
I have had formers explain to me that they are following biblical principles about fighting heresies, but do you know what I think…I think they are afraid to move on to the meat of grace and find it more comfortable in their redefined Adventism world.
It does seem to me that the former Adventist Facebook groups members are more concerned about affirming their own exits out of the church than celebrating the faith they now claim to have found as their renewal.
Look, I am sure that the moderators of the groups and the members of the groups — and there are several — are good people with sincere motivates. At one time there was one that I thought did an excellent job of keeping the group’s focus toward spiritual forward movement and not so negative.
Let me also be clear that the problem is not criticism in and of itself, to me its steady criticism, unfounded criticism, and over exaggerated criticism. I am not against discernment, but when it comes to the SDA church or any organization for that matter, I trust the critical perspectives from those who have skin in the game. (I follow Fulcrum7 and others who are in the church. You and I who are outside the church, we forfeited are right to take part in its correction when we exited.)
I’m also going to stop short of discrediting the former Adventist Facebook groups for every former because each of us needs to filter them through our own standard of what value they bring us and what the Lord’s will is, but as for me, I have left.
Do you know what else I think? I think it’s not healthy to keep ranting about something, so I’m done with this issue and am burying it here on my website.