Some of what you said about the questionnaire reminded me of a particular mannerism of Gary’s. He is always calling things “new.” You said Gary "is wanting to change things there" and that there "has been a revelation." I've come to find that nearly everything Gary does is described as a "revelation" or a “new thing.” It could be a big thing or a small thing but it's always a "new thing." I think there's a reason for that.
One thing TLW members have heard countless times over the pulpit is that they didn't submit themselves completely last time, or they didn't truly repent, but this time it will work. This time they have a "new understanding of what repentance means,” or a "new revelation of what love is.” I encourage anyone reading this to write down those revelations. Have they changed in 30 years or are they still the same “revelations” Gary was using in the 80s? Is that why you can seemingly pick up a tape and 'have the answer’ to what your problem is with your finances? The answer is in the shared language TLW uses, or "walk talk" as it has been called. Through that language, you can trick your brain into thinking you’ve solved any problem whatsoever.
Rick Ross, the creator of this forum, has identified 10 signs of a potentially unsafe leader, and an additional 10 signs regarding people who follow said leader. I posted a link at the bottom, and I highly recommend reading them all, but three in particular that I see occurring here are:1. The group/leader is always right.
When Gary says it's a "new day," it's usually accompanied by the expectation that what Gary is about to say is infallible, because people have been praying 24/7 that God is 'about to' to give him an answer 'today' that 'will change this earth if only they can turn their brains off and accept it.'2. Dependency upon the group/leader for problem solving, solutions, and definitions without meaningful reflective thought.
By calling it "new," Gary is also saying "don't compare anything that didn't work in the past." In this way, people are encouraged to resist thinking critically and comparing what they are about to hear to how it differs from what they heard before.3. Followers feel they can never be "good enough"
The subtext in calling something a "new revelation" is that if people don't accept the word, the onus is on them and not Gary. It's their problem that they can't allow Gary to change. They've hardened their heart.
In this way, "new revelations" are old news for Gary. Much of what he does is described as "new." Whether it's a word he's about to bring or a Hawaiian shirt he's about to wear, he has molded an audience that responds to that language by guilt tripping themselves over any critical thought they might have about it.
These programmed mannerisms may seem innocent, but everyone who has ever been inside TLW knows that "walk talk" is weird enough to raise eyebrows outside of the church. That's because the language used is programmed to be controlling. It's programmed to make you shut off the part of your brain that would be skeptical that Gary has any desire after 30 years to give up the real power and control that he has over other people's lives.