A friend of mine, now in her mid-forties, grew up in a sexually abusive situation. She survived, but as an older teen, her history led her to dabble in an alternative lifestyle. She became a Christian in her early twenties and repented of and renounced her past.
In her late thirties, she discovered that her mother had been adopted and was half Native American. I'm not sure which nation, but given the geography, I would guess either Hochunk, Ojibway, Pottawatami or Oneida.
Naturally, she thought this was pretty cool, but did not act on it.
Round about 2005, she became involved in a hip, growing, evangelical church. She went to the church's young, inexperienced pastor for counseling and for the first time in her life found herself telling someone about the abuse and her days as a lesbian. After a number of sessions, the pastor encouraged her to be "transparent" with the whole church and start a ministry to former homosexuals and lesbians. She did. Or rather, she attempted to do so. Midway through the process, the multitude of changes that the pastor was trying to foist onto his congregation caught up with him and in the face of heavy resistance, he accepted a call at another church out of state. That left my friend vulnerable and certain established members of the church figuratively picked her apart until there was nothing left but bones. She left the church and she left the Church.
Curious about her Native background, she decided to learn more about it and was warmly welcomed into a tribal community. And that's where she's been until now. There are Native Americans who are staunch Christians. Unfortunately, the group she became associated with are not, but they offered her the kind of acceptance that to date no church has. Several other friends and I have been cautioning her and she has now come to a crossroads.
She feels the call of Christ again in her life and desires to return to her first Love. What she wants more than anything is to be able to keep the relationships she has developed on what she calls "the Red Road" and her faith in Christ and reconcile the two. But as she has expressed this longing for a closer relationship with Christ, she is encountering resistance from her Native friends. They are willing to allow her her faith in Christ as long as she redefines Him as they define Him: a Jewish shaman who preached only love and acceptance and whose teachings were twisted by "the White Man" to form Christianity.
I am one of the few Christian friends that have not abandoned her because of her past and her searching. I continue to try to encourage her. Please pray that she will be able to overcome the betrayal she still feels from her previous church and be able to make wise decisions about accepting the elements of Native culture that have become important to her without losing a doctrinally sound faith in Christ.
I am of the Circle, a follower of Eylon in the great Romance
Praying with you.
“For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life."
Also praying for your friend.
Praying for your friend.
Praying for her!
Praying for her and you. As you know, much of the native American Shamanism has a strong demonic element to it. Your friend needs to focus on Christ as Lord and dump all others. It can be a tough distinction for some to see, but it is not so much right or wrong doctrine to follow, but simply which person to follow in the spirit.
I know. She has alienated most of her Christian friends with her pursuit of the Red Road. So as she sees it, her choice is between the biblical Jesus she loves but Who is accompanied by people who have hurt and betrayed her, or the shamanistic Jesus of her Native friends who have been accepting of and friendly to her. I'm sticking with her, especially now that she is speaking of a longing for her "first love" and as she speaks and acts on it she is going to see the other side of her Native friends.
She should find a different bunch of Christians who are more friendly.I know. She has alienated most of her Christian friends with her pursuit of the Red Road. So as she sees it, her choice is between the biblical Jesus she loves but Who is accompanied by people who have hurt and betrayed her, or the shamanistic Jesus of her Native friends who have been accepting of and friendly to her. I'm sticking with her, especially now that she is speaking of a longing for her "first love" and as she speaks and acts on it she is going to see the other side of her Native friends.
I am reviving this thread because I fear my friend's life may be in danger. I am not being melodramatic. As I expected would happen, certain men in the Native American group she was hanging out with gave her the ultimatum: our way, or your Christian Jesus...you can't have both. To her credit, she has chosen to remain faithful to Christ. Since that decision, however, her phone has been hacked, as has her email accounts and her Facebook page. She has received a barrage of threatening messages. And last night, she was followed home from work (she rides a bicycle since her car died) by three cars...so now they know where she lives. I have left her messages telling her I will come get her no matter the time of day or night (we live in different towns) and she can stay in my spare bedroom until it is safe for her, but I have not heard back. She has made out an impromptu will on her Facebook page in the event anything happens to her.
Please, please pray for her protection.