By now most of us have watched that horrendous video of Dr. Dao who was dragged off the United Airlines flight. To be honest I watch a lot of violent movies, which most blockbusters are these days, but this was real life and I was transfixed by the video and the story. I think most of us were because many of us could relate to the man. Many people have their horror stories of airlines mistreating the customers. Most of us know how we are herded like cattle into our tiny seats, row by row. Many have been told that their bags are, “nope, too large” then get taken away to the cellar of some plane. We are told when we can stand to go to the loo, when to sit upright and when we can sit back. Some of us have been bullied by flight crew members with attitudes to “shut off that phone NOW!” and others have simply been bumped off a flight. This is why we react.
What if there is a church like that? What if church leaders tell you to give more offerings then question you when it is lower than the previous year? What if church leaders bully you in what to share and what not to share on Facebook, not to talk to your childhood friends or family? What if you are pressured into giving your thumbprint? What if church officials warn you that you will be kicked out if you don’t comply?
Would you be like those passengers on the plane? Or would you be like Dr. Dao who stayed put and stood his ground even to the point of being physically hurt and dragged on the floor, bleeding, because of his principles?
The funny thing is, this is what is happening now in the Iglesia Ni Cristo. People are being expelled, not because they want to leave but because they are standing their ground on what they believe in.
Let me say one thing here for everyone and for the INC Church leaders to understand: they make this out like there’s a rebellion. IT IS NOT A REBELLION. If anything this is the opposite- people are standing their ground because of what they were originally taught in the Church.
Some may say, why don’t you just leave? Why not find another church or start your own?
Well, just like the United Airlines passenger, Dr. Dao, why didn’t he just walk out and get another plane? Even though those security officers warned and pressured him, he stayed. They had to pull him out, smash his face in, drag him through the aeroplane, yet he managed to run back in, disoriented and bleeding, until they took him to the hospital.
Many brethren are now bullied, harassed and expelled if the Church leaders feel they are not “one with EVM”. Just like the dragging of the United Airlines passenger, this too, is totally unnecessary. These people have not done wrong; they did not break laws; they are not living in wickedness; they do not want to go to another church nor start their own; they just want to be left alone. That is why more and more are getting “spiritually dragged” because they are trying to standing their ground and refusing to be bullied and feel furious when they are kicked out.
Don’t use your “authority” to pressure and bully. Learn from the Good Book:
“Feed the flock of God; care for it willingly, not grudgingly; not for what you will get out of it but because you are eager to serve the Lord. Don’t be tyrants, but lead them by your good example,”
1 Peter 5:2-3