Thursday, January 11, 2007

Erin's Rant

Okay, I don't normally feel the need to voice my opinion like this, but an article I read recently drove me nuts. And Robert is off playing war, so I have no one to vent to about it. So, here goes....

The article was about a Christian weight loss program called Weigh Down and it's founder, Gwen Shamblin. Ms. Shamblin founded the weight loss program in 1986 and in 1999 she founded a church (Remnant Fellowship Church) that is centered around the program. Now, I realize this does not sound that bad, but the church and its followers are being called a cult by many groups (i.e. Raphael Martinez, a minister who runs Spiritwatch Ministries, which tracks religious and social fringe groups. The members generally cut all ties with there former life and move to Franklin, Tenn. just to be near the multimillion dollar estate of Ms. Shamblin). The people who participate in Weigh Down are told that if they continue to eat and remain overweight they will be doomed to hell. (If the members do not keep with the program they are asked to leave or are fired if serving the church.) They are also pressured to leave their churches because they are being lied to.

One of the reasons they are pressured is because Weigh Down's doctrine is not biblical. The founder, Ms. Shamblin, sent an email in 2000 stating that Jesus is not one with God. She denied the Trinity, which is one of the core tenets of the Christian faith. They also believe in severe corporal punishment. There is a case currently pending that involves Ms. Shamblin regarding the death of an 8 year old boy. His parents are members of Shamblin's church and following the ways of the church punished their beating him to death. I understand giving your child a smack on the bottom after a warning if they are misbehaving, but there is no reason to beat your child. And the fact that a "pastor" would endorse it is insane.

I guess my main problem with this church is that for the people who leave they are scarred against ever going to another church. And those who stay are so indoctrinated that they refuse to see that they are being lied to. These people have cut themselves off from truth just so they can focus on the worldly goals of being thin, rich, beautiful, and famous. *By the way, Ms. Shamblin's husband is not involved in any of the ministry. He is slightly overweight and that does not fit with the image of the church. Her two children, who are very thin, are heavily involved with the church though.* I am sure that in the beginning Ms. Shamblin was attempting to help people, but she has destroyed families, lives, and faiths instead. It does not matter how you look or how much you weigh; God loves you regardless. It is absurd to think that He would send you to hell just because you are a little pudgy.

Well, that is it. This is long and I am not sure how coherent it is. The kids have not been sleeping well since Daddy has been gone. So, I am a little out of it. Hope everyone is well.


Marilee said...

I read and had her materials several years ago. But, through the Spirit's guiding, I was able to discern many of the falsehoods of her teachings. Its interesting I was just talking about Shamblyn's "waywardness" with MamaK the other night. Odd that your blog would be about the same thing.

We must keep praying for the discernment to be able to see all the false teachers out there.

I am grateful for your insight!


mycatbaloo said...

I , too , am grateful that the article you read has stirred you to comment. I don't know how many people will read your concerns about Gwen Shamblin's business WeighDownWorkshop and church Remnant Fellowship, which are quite valid, but hopefully anyone who does and is maybe considering this 'weightloss program' will reconsider. There are alternatives, that's for sure.

Hopefully the article in Self Magazine will also be a good head's up warning for those seeking weight loss help. Steer clear of this particular 'program'.

I was once very involved in the program and walked away from it in 2000 when the attack by Gwen Shamblin on the Trinity and Evangelical churches was launched.

Ditto: We must keep praying for the discernment to be able to see all the false teachers out there.

May God bless you, your children, and your soldier husband. May God bless our troops!


MamaK said...

Great rant, Erin. I was very familiar with the Weigh Down Workshop, but it phased out in our area (thank God), and never got sucked into any of the yucky stuff.

Denying the Trinity is quite popular now, and many people that we think are fellow believers have been deceived in this doctrine. It's rather scary. Erik is studying it intensely right now because we know some people that believe this.

Great words, Erin. Keep on, babe!


val said...

It broke my heart when you said your husband was out "playing war" He is putting His life on the line as are all of the men and women serving our country. PLease don't take it so lightly. Even if they have no choice in the matter they need our love and support. You also do not site any articles etc. to support your view of Mrs. Shamblins teachings. Just curious are there any?

val said...

It broke my heart when you wrote that your husband was "Playing war"
Maybe you didn't mean it the way it was written. Maybe He isn't in Iraq or some other war torn area. I guess it bothered me because our soldiers are losing their lives every day and they would consider it far from being "playing war" I thank God for men like your husband who -job or not -are out there suffering so I can go free. Greater love has no man than this....Your husband is making a tremendous sacrifice.