Monday, January 27, 2014

Monday Odds and Ends - Deviation (Eleavation) Church Edition

Another Mall Shooting - 19 year old black kid roams a Columbia Maryland Mall looking for someone to kill. Finally targets two young white employees in a skate board shop. But cops says it wasn't a hate crime. Seriously?

Airport Idiocy - Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CDIA) is asking customers to stop looping around the airport while trying to pick up passengers.

They want you to use the cellphone lot. But the cell phone lots are a nightmare. The parking spaces are crazy tight and impossible to use. Fender benders in the area are a daily happening.

On the plus side CDIA's Cell Phone Parking Lot is at least close to the terminal. Denver and Ft. Lauderdale's Cell Lots are miles away. But other than location CDIA is nightmareish.

Cell Phone Lot "A" is one way in and out with 54 left and right diagonal super narrow parking spaces. Trouble is if you snag a spot next to an SUV or MiniVan your ability to back out is greatly compromised. Then given the over stressed natural of the area, tempers flare and things get out of hand quickly. The lot is normally full in the evenings.

Cell Phone Lot "B" is the overflow location that is basically a square surrounded by chain-link fencing and a lot attendant who either stands there with his hands in his pockets or talking on his cell phone.  The lot is just parking spaces with no traffic flow whatsoever.

The ideal lot is on a dead end street with a right turn enter and drive through parking and right turn exit. The parking spaces are wide enough to handle a Ford 350 super cab. The lot is well lighted and free of tree and brushes that could conceal an attacker. Sidewalks and outdoor seating is a plus.

Elevation Church - Was back in the news on Sunday, but most of it is a re-hash of Stuart Watson's exposé from several weeks ago. The Observer rehash is here.

But the wow moment is Pastor Furtick's rant "Hey Haters!" which he is seething against those who question his operation which the Observer or hackers placed oddly at the bottom of the Observer on line story.

Cedar's Take: Furtick isn't old enough to remember Jim Bakker's fall from grace. But there is a really large monument to God's failing just across the state line in York County.

I don't hate Furtick I just wish his love of God was greater than his greed and want of money. I just wish that God would have given him wisdom as generously as he has given him charisma.

And maybe it comes down to my grandfather's mantra "With all thy getting, get understanding" Proverbs 4:7 or so I think.

But I can source it here as well:

"With all thy getting, get understanding, is the banner under which these Forbes editorials have appeared since the first issue of the publication. We have no illusions about what great wealth can do and what it cannot do. We believe in the worthwhileness of striving by all worthy means to attain success and to attain wealth. Simply because we are convinced that no amount of money is worth the sacrifice of one’s better instincts, of one’s self-respect-of one’s soul, if you wish-simply because we are convinced that riches not gained legitimately and decently are not worth having...."
-- B.C. Forbes

Bertie Charles Forbes the journalist and founder of Forbes, of course was a Scot and so it goes that CP has a special allegiance to all things that Scots say.

The bigger question is Elevation Church something more than a mega church with poor public relations and serious lack of transparency? Well much of Elevation's operation has cultish hints.

They are a small religious group, not an established denomination.

There is often extreme paranoia within the group; they believe that they are in danger and that they are being closely monitored and heavily persecuted by governments or people outside the group. People on “the outside” are demonized.

They are led by a single male charismatic leader. The leader totally dominates the membership, closely controlling them.
But cult or not, the real trouble with Elevation is three fold. First they are highly visible, second they are grabbing $400,000.00 a week, third their financial operations are a somewhat disconcerting maze of multi holding core related but not related entities. Smoke and mirrors account without any transparency makes them the perfect target for a Federal Investigation ala Jim Bakker and PTL.  


Anonymous said...

Furtick is creepy. That video is creepy. What is up with the rings and rolex? Are the "Elevators" that blind?

Anonymous said...

Hey Haters! Well that will make everything look better.

Anonymous said...

Listen to the video you don't hear the name of Jesus in Furtick's rapping self absorbed motivational bull shit. Was he in a grunge band in his prior life?

Anonymous said...

During the holidays people filled up the center of the cell phone lot making it impossible four anyone to get out. I avoided it.

It would be nice to have at least a porta potty available too!

Anonymous said...

Agree Anon 9:43, creepy.

First time if seen a pic or video of Furtick, I guess I expected him to look more like John Edwards or something.

Anonymous said...

agree also. beyond creepy.

Is it true that there are no crosses in church. Only their logo?

Anonymous said...

Furtick is another Jim Jones in the making! Just wait for the Mothership followers.......

Anonymous said...

The airport parking is a mess. Jerry Orr jumped ship just in time to leave a massive mess.

I used to park in the hourly lot and it was a very simple solution to picking up family.

I am convinced there is no plan just spend spend spend. There was little oversight before there in absolutely ZERO now!

What a cluster F*$%^!

Anonymous said...

It would be appreciated if you didn't embed sound/video links

Anonymous said...

I am a member of Elevation Church and the video you have posted should be removed you don't Pastor Furtick's permission to post this video.

Anonymous said...

@3:59 ??and cedar needs permission why? Your pastor put this video in the public domain... how dare anyone point it out...

Anonymous said...

To 3:59 ..... Cult, you are in a CULT. Be wary of the koolaid.

Anonymous said...

If you haven't had a head-on collision with the devil in a while you might be traveling in the same direction. The heavier the impact, the heavier the resistance. When God is having an impact in a city like Charlotte then this is what happens, the Observer, Stuart Watson and Cedar Post. They are all being used to try and slow the impact of God but when God is for you who can be against you. There are lots of great churches in Charlotte who all do things differently. If you don't like Elevation don't go there, don't give there, but don't spread hate and use generalizations about their attendees or the heart of the Pastor. Only God should judge.

Anonymous said...

"only God should judge" is the last refuge of people who know they have been caught doing something wrong. "Look away! Don't use your God-given brain or heart or skills to figure out what I'm doing! Follow blindly and do what I say! Because I am your god on earth and you must not question me or what I'm doing to you or with you! I will use words we say are from God against you, to shame and scare you out of your reasonable, rational conclusions!"

"If you determine you shouldn't believe me, I will say you are working with the devil!"

That video is an accurate, highly-produced decision by Furtick. Standing on its own, you can easily see what's wrong there. Try watching it with no sound. Watch the camera cuts, special lighting, angles he's using, his aggressive way and hand gesture zooms. Then listen to the irritating music blasting throughout. Why should that even be necessary? None of it is. It's smoke and lights and more efforts to divert your attention and distract the mind from thinking. It's a cult. He is a cult leader.

As to why it's anyone's business, have you heard of being your brother's keeper?
And the financial and tax implications are a matter of public interest. So, that's why people care.

Anonymous said...

So tell me again whats been done wrong? Once again no one is making anyone go to Elevation. Financial and Tax implications? It looks like they are doing what a church is supposed to do and support organizations that help others: Crisis Assistance, Samaritans Purse, Charlotte Rescue, 300,000 to homeless. The video is in response to people like you? So you are allowed to have a blog that hates on everyone from Fire to Police to whatever else, but someone else cant defend themselves. I am sure you are just another liberal who screams intolerance about everyone else except yourself.

Anonymous said...

To 10:08 .... You are in a cult. Deal with it.

Anonymous said...

I hate to ruin your definition of a cult, but its defined as a group of deviants and there are a lot of good people at Elevation who don't deserve to be put in that category because your too simple-minded. Actually 14,000 of them weekly. Probably one of them you may know teaches one of your kids, does your hair, changes your oil, cleans your house, protects you in a police or firefighter capacity, does your taxes etc...

Anonymous said...

I was responding to the statements that Furtick's video should not be seen by people unless he says so. Why? He directly addresses people who disagree with him as if they are his target audience (except it seems more like he was trying to cultivate a reaction from his followers). If he didn't want it to be seen, he shouldn't produce and publish it. And it looks like he spent a good bit of money to produce, rather than just making a statement. I guess that money came from the church, too. And if it doesn't matter what other people are doing, why did he say anything in any form?

He is trying to obfuscate the truth and tell people they are with the devil if they are not with him. CULT.

There is no intolerance. It was a response to the attempt to control Furtick's message, which is key to a cult leader.

There is no condemnation of 14,000 people (which includes children who can't choose for themselves). There is concern for them. I'm sure there are many well-meaning, lovely people who have been led to believe Furtick will lead them to salvation. CULT.

If they get something out of the "message" given at the building where they gather, that's great. But remember that every cult member believes they are on the right path to salvation by following their leader.

It is admirable to donate money to various charities. The total is a pittance compared to the money coming in, and we don't even know the full amount because it's secret. The boards are staffed other "leader" buddies who sit on each other's boards and approve money for each other. Most of them make millions personally with sale of books and other items. The church becomes a good promotional tool for books and other items.

When you look at the totals, it's not an impressive percentage going to charity.

when you call someone simple-minded, that would be "you're simple-minded"
not "your"

Anonymous said...

The pastor at my church where I grew up lives in a small cottage next to the church. He lives there free and is a paid a nice salary of $60,000 per year plus retirement, life insurance and health insurance. His wife is the church music director but is not paid a salary.

They conduct yard sales and bake sales to raise enough money for a mission trip to Costa Rica each year. They run a soup kitchen and when it is really cold they just leave the doors open to their Wilmington NC church.

They raise four children all who went to college. I know this because they are my parents.

My college education was free paid for by a combination of scholarships and donations, under the provision that I attend then Bob Jones University.

Pastor Furtick can do what he wants, but I've seen first hand his preaching style and his message, and it is flawed. He appeals to those who "want" they want a new car, a better job, a bigger house and he has convinced 14000 people that he can lead them to the new glory of God.

It is indeed a church of greed.

Ask yourself, where is the bake sale at Elevation?

Ask yourself Elevators who are we going, on this "new day"?

Cedar Posts said...

9:12 I hear ya! The youtube videos and audio I embed have a "don't auto start" button. This crazy GodTube didn't or at least I could see.

But I agree its annoying as all.

Anonymous said...

Cedar I don't think the HEY HATERS vid did Furtick any good. I've been going to Elevation almost since the start and have recently moved on because of what was lacking.

I don't disagree with Furtick's message of God's plan, but I really doubt that God's plan is for everyone to become rich, drive a BMW and live in a gated community.

I don't fault the people who attend, I like the style of worship but my ears hurt. I really like a church where at the end of the service the pastor stands outside and shakes hands and knows everyone by name. and that just doesn't happen in a mega church.

And you're correct the shady money dealing will bring them down. But there's more....

Anonymous said...

Some woman I was "talking to" for a bit talked me into going to Elevation with her one Sunday (she promised many fun things later :)!) So, I went. The whole time the guy tried to sell some book he had written and talked a lot about himself. When it was all done, I told her he would either be investigated or indicted within three years and that he was a con man...that was December of 2010...I was off by a couple sue me!

Anonymous said...

"...pervasive propensity to pick a fight..." Someone's been reading "Practical Alliteration for the Entrepreneur/Evangelist"