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Where Does My Tithe Money Go? (Kelly takes a vacation)

When you give to a church it's usually understood that the money goes to support the church's finances and keep it running.  Being a...

Monday, September 26, 2016

Memories of The Crossing Church

It has been over 5 years since I darkened the doors of The Crossing Church in Elk River, Minnesota.  I see it frequently as I drive by for my work on occasion.  The new building, where they manipulated so many out of their hard earned money in Code of the Samurai, is up and shining in the sun.  I initially thought they'd be sorry for their actions and go back to the old days of reaching out to the broken.  There were some apologies but it's back to business as usual.  Though many are still leaving, and for the same reasons we spoke of years ago, they are quite skilled at getting in a new pack of ignorant wide-eyed fools (I used to be one) to financially support their rise to the top.

I've pondered for years now as to when the change happened and why it happened.  Yes, they got involved with Joel Osteen and saw dollar signs, but it was before that.  Yes, Eric wanted to compete with Steven Furtick, but it was before that.  I think I've finally figured it out.

You stopped serving your people and made the people serve you.


The Crossing Church wasn't always a money hungry group of vain "pastors" more concerned with image and your tithe money than the pain and suffering in your life.  Here is a short list of good memories I had at The Crossing Church and why I stayed as long as I did:


  • The offering wasn't pushed.  In fact, they used to say that if you were in need you could reach in and grab some cash to get you through.  Now I do understand that they no longer allow this because people are putting their credit card information on the "connectvelopes" (Oh hell....I just can't with that one.)  Reasonable but another reason it's not the place it used to be.



  • SHED.  This was a challenge to get your personal possessions down to 100 items.  You were allowed to determine what that meant to you and your family, but the idea was to get rid of clutter and ultimately give the excess to others.  The Crossing did this as a church and sermons were preached on it.  I'm a natural giver so I was all over this.  My entire family "shed" a full truck and trailer's worth of stuff.  We were told there would be a semi at the church that day to give the items (there wasn't - the whole thing was a cluster-fuck) but we were still able to give to a local charity.  It felt like something Jesus would do.  How are those 100 items Eric & Kelly?

  • There was a sense of community.  You could speak to the pastors, any of them, on a one-on-one basis.  They knew your name.  They seemed to care.  They were actual humans and not faces on a highway billboard.

  • It was fun.  Now I know the super legalists freaked out about their "worship" and giving sermons with practical application instead of "unpacking scripture", but it was helpful.  You wanted to go back.  For someone who has had a bible shoved down their throat from birth, it was a breath of fresh air.

Take a look at yourselves Crossing.  Think back to when you first started and compare it to today; are things better?  Has anyone really been saved?  Yes, you've "dunked" many but what happened to them after they dried off?  Can you chill your enormous egos for one damn moment to see the damage you've caused?  I hope you can.  I truly do.




Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Oops...The Crossing Church Did It Again

Another sad, yet all too familiar, story of people leaving The Crossing Church.  Please read the powerful words of Neil and Hannah and ask yourself some hard questions.  As they said, "Don’t just take our word for it. Do some investigation of your own."




Monday, August 29, 2016

The Crossing's "Reach Report"

Tracking everything ~ THE REACH REPORT
  • First-time Guest Calls
  • Weekend Connect Calls/Conversations
  • Volunteer Calls/Conversations
    • Invite people to join a your/a team.
    • Expectation is 3 PER WEEK!
  • List the names of those you invited to church or shared Christ with this week
    • Campus Pastor is expected to do 10 and Staff Members are expected to do 1-3.
    • Also must list notes about your conversation.  (Gee...anyone else feel a bit violated?)
  • Name 3 Volunteers you thanked (Good!  You're killing these people so the least you can do is thank them!  And then ask them to do more I'm sure.)
  • Name the person you sat with in a service or personally influenced to fill a seat.
  • Name one thing you did to go out of your way to build a connection with a lost person this week (Nice except they are just a number to fill a seat, bring to Christ, force to volunteer and rake in the tithe money!)
  • Name one of the ways you used social media to influence people this week.  (Oh yes, your Facebook/Instagram/Twitter is not yours ~ The Crossing owns you.)
  • Name one person you met in the lobby this week.


Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Cabin Services at The Crossing Church

Can't make it to the week end services?  Have no worries...The Crossing Church now has "Cabin Services" on Wednesday nights!  So why would they need to do this if you can always hear the talks online later?

MONEY

The entire reason for these Cabin Services is because when you are not there on the week end you don't tithe, so this is their tricky way of making sure they get your money.

Have you noticed how often tithing (money) is spoken about at The Crossing Church?  They weave it into everything to inundate you with the same message so you'll feel you have to give.  It's manipulation and it's wrong.

Do you think I'm wrong?  Ask them.  Ask them point blank if the Cabin Services are to get more money.  Ask all the hard questions that are eating at you.  Ask about the concerns you have with the church that you are afraid to talk about.  Ask yourself why you are afraid to speak.



Monday, August 22, 2016

You can leave The Crossing Church

Does something feel off to you but you can't put your finger on it?  Well it's because a lot is wrong.  

Are you afraid to ask questions?  Why would that be?  Ask for detailed financial reports, ask about the WCCO news reports, ask about the blogs...and see what happens.

Are you scared to say "no" to their requests to serve more?  To give more?

Are you being asked to act with Radical Faith per their code; and you don't want to?  You don't have to.

What happens when you attempt to say "no"?  Are you shamed?  Blamed?  Even threatened?

You can leave The Crossing Church.  Really, you can.  You are not under their authority.  God isn't going to punish you.  You can leave.

Join us in the Back Alley....it's nice...you can breathe again.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

The Crossing Church - Exhausting their Volunteers

Hey Crossing Church Volunteers ~ You must be so tired.  You are serving until exhaustion and it's still not enough, right?  Did you make all your calls?  Did you 'reach' enough people?  (And do you have documentation to prove this?)  Serving week ends, mandatory Community of Leaders meetings and now the Wednesday night "Cabin Services" (which you know are only to bring in more tithe money), not to mention any other random event that can't go on without you.  Open a new location and you have to be there to fill the seats.  Add on the mental exhaustion of emails reprimanding you for not doing enough, not doing it the way they want and additional financial burdens of penalties for not living up to their code of the moment.

Is all this serving for Jesus (Eric & Kelly Dykstra) worth it?  Are you happy? 
 

Kelly says in her recent sermon (minute 25:11) "on a monthly basis staff members have conversations with people who are leaving the church because they got their feelings hurt, there was a misunderstanding, they were asked to volunteer too much and didn't want to say 'no'..."

They didn't want to say "no" to volunteering too much or felt they couldn't say "no"?  Is "No, I don't want to volunteer." even an option?  

Tithe and Serve is the battle cry at The Crossing and will be slammed into with every sermon and now ever Section Leader.  Try and say "no" and tell me what happens.

Kelly Dykstra asked on her Instagram today:
"What things make you happy? What do they cost you?Are they worth the cost?"

Serving them is costing you your family, your money and your life.  Again, I can't stress this enough, you can leave!!  

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Tracking your every move at The Crossing Church

So you'd like to go to church, stay a little under the radar and then go about your life?  Not at The Crossing Church, as your every move is now being tracked.  Lets break down how it now works:

Well you already know about the seat Nazis; you aren't allowed to be a grown up and pick the seat of your choosing as you are told where you will sit.  This is done for two reasons; first, to make the room look filled and create an excited energy from being packed together, second, is for you to start submitting to their self-claimed authority over you.

Now along with your assigned seat comes the new Section Leaders.  This is the brain child of mega-church pastor Bill Hybels.  As you can see in this video, he explains that the entire church will be broken out into sections and each section will have a leader.  He wants every person that comes in the church to be 'touched' by someone and welcomed.  Sounds nice, right?  Not really.  The Section Leaders are then responsible for reciting scripted messages, usually about serving or tithing, to their sections and making those numbers happen. They'll speak to you as if they have some special thoughts from their heart but they have been given the exact words to say.  If they see a new person they are to stop any conversation they are having and try and get that new person to their section.  So of course numbers in each section are tracked, how many people they speak to are tracked and how many conversations they have outside of church are tracked.  More people in the door means more tithe money coming in.  Are you seeing the manipulation now?

When you don't show up the next week you are called as you're now on their radar.  It's all done under the guise of "we miss you" but what they miss is that you are a number and their numbers went down when you weren't there.  It's all false caring and it's fucking hurtful.

I'll say it again and I won't stop saying it ~ YOU CAN LEAVE!  You may feel you have to stay, you may feel you have nowhere else to go, you may feel stuck but you aren't.  People will not go to hell because you leave The Crossing Church.  God is not going to be angry if you make a decision for yourself.  You are not alone and you will be just fine.  Really.