Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Date: November 25, 2017 12:33PM
Really happy to discover this thread. Been desperately trying to find more people that I can relate my story to that will understand what I have/am going through.
When I look back at the reasons I've ended my relationships in the past, the answer that rings in my ear is my family. They have convinced me to end so many relationships that I've been happy in and and with because they believed that God did not want us to be together or I was being affected by being around them.
I was born into The Walk in southern CA ('78). My Mom and Dad met at the church in Hawaii. I am not sure when, but I think it was in '76. They painted this idyllic picture of pure praise and worship. The glory days of working for IMPACT, getting impartations from JRS, the Brothers all blessing me at my baptism, being part of the first fruits. They always told us they left when things got bad after JRS divorced his wife. I always thought they left the cult and it's teachings behind in the early 80's, but now i realize they only just became a smaller version of it. Instead of JRS, My dad and Mom were at the head, me and my sisters comprising the Body.
I thought that the secret vocabulary(affected, transference, binding, etc..) and practices(such as blasting connections, speaking judgement, rebuking passivity, etc) were something unique to my family. Maybe they borrowed some things they learned from the Walk, but for the most part it was something they had been developing and trying to teach us all this time. It was always evolving by my dad and mom's direction, incorporating Kabbala, Ouspensky and Gurdjieff, Tarot, sign reading, etc... But at the core was maintaining your walk with God and loosing his perfect will at all costs. This made it very difficult to follow and exponentially difficult to share.
I never knew how to explain what my family believed so I always left huge chunks out to anyone I got close to. This always ended in them not understanding why I left them or knowing my family coerced me into it. I learned to keep major parts of my life secret and tried to protect my relationships from them and my family from exposure out of loyalty, even when I had major doubts about what they believed.
I met my wife online and from the beginning I did not let my family know much about it because I knew they would get a check on it. Eventually I told them and they met her as well. They have tried to influence my decisions surrounding her from the beginning. Things grew, despite my family's involvement. We bought a house together, got pregnant and then got married. Every big milestone or decision we tried to make, there was a very vocal outcry led by my mother that it needed to be a certain way. For a long time, I've been trying to make compromises between what I want to do and what they feel is best for us to do.
My wife has tried to relate to them and understand their perspective as best she can (with the censored version I shared), but they have never accepted her. We get along great and do not fight much, but when we do it is about one thing: my family and mother meddling in our marriage. I'm only recently seeing how damaging it has been for my wife and destructive to our marriage.
It got so bad, we almost separated. I eventually revealed everything to her and she helped me to see how destructive this belief system was. I went No Contact with my family and we are rebuilding apart from them. I've been doing research about the walk and I read the Woodrow Nichols book, "EXPERIMENT IN END TIME APOSTASY: THE WALK of JOHN ROBERT STEVENS The History, Beliefs, and Spiritual Dynamics of a Christian Cult"
This book blew me away. Things did not start getting bad with Marilyn, JRS was under the influence of some very dark things well before that. Everything I thought was unique and special and worth protecting about my family's belief system was born out of JRS's delusional ego and spread through fear and control. This is not something that needs protecting, it needs exposure. It almost destroyed my wife and kid's lives. Something I thought had died almost 40 years ago has only been growing in all of us. Inception of the highest order.
So right now, I feel shattered and hollow. Not sure what I believe, like walking around with a broken compass. I guess I'm looking for resources and advice from those that have escaped this way of thinking and have gotten on the other side.