This recipe is as old as the hills, one may say. But this particular recipe has been a staple in the pantry of many Christians on and off again since 1966, originating in the Fort Lauderdale area. It began with a well intended effort to stave off a legitimate hunger. This hunger came about “out of a concern for the weak commitment, shallow community, and the general worldliness characteristic of many American churches. But their solution was extra-biblical requirements – membership in a house-group which included having life-decisions “covered” by the house-group leader, elder, or pastor. Such decisions included things like where to live and work, whom to marry, or whether to see a doctor when someone was ill.” (See Wikipedia for a general overview of the Shepherding Movement.) Unfortunately, the bad taste that this recipe left in everyone’s mouth did not fall out of favor until 1989 when those who came up with this recipe finally officially denounced it. A whole generation of Christianity was poisoned by its teachings.
That generation was destroyed by trying to get Christians to live out a life based upon those “extra-biblical requirements.” If you would play the party game “Six Degrees of Separation,” one can even trace the most recent disasters of “I Kissed Dating Goodbye” directly back to the Shepherding Movement. Others were supposedly more wiser and gifted to direct your dating decisions and marriage choice than the Holy Spirit guiding you from within. Despite the fruit of divorce that beset the examples of the couples portrayed in the book, along with the author himself, there are others who still insist if only it was applied correctly . . .
The unspoken theology is that we just did not try hard enough and if we do it differently, it will turn out right this time. What is the old saying regarding insanity? I believe it goes something to the effect of “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again but expecting a different result each time you try it.“
And now we, the Shepherding Movement being reborn in an attempt to apply it differently. Self proclaimed apostles and prophets claim to have more insight on who you should vote for than you do! After all, why bother thinking for yourself or hearing God for yourself. Voting used to a matter of conscience. Now it has become the will of God as determined by people supposedly more gifted at directing your life choices. Fall out of step with these pseudo prophets and apostles, and you quickly fall out of favor with the Churches that teach to uphold them. Because they reason that without these self proclaimed apostles and prophets, Christ can not possibly return, as they are the end time movement spoken of in Scripture. End time apostles and prophets have become the poster children for fear and shame. Shame on you if you do not fear them!!!!
Shepherd’s pie is nothing but a recipe for disaster. Will we be force fed this for another 33 years? I hope not. I think I will eat the Bread of Life instead. I have read that you do not hunger with that recipe . . .
And don’t forget, be sure to serve with a heaping dish of Loving One Another!