by Brian Shilhavy
Anniversaries are dates etched into history. Most of them are celebrated because the reason we remember them is that they bring back pleasant memories. These are dates such as birth dates, dates of marriage, etc.
Some anniversaries are dates in history that are painful, and not worth celebrating. I have been criticized in my past for not celebrating certain dates that brought joy to some, but were painful to me.
Yet every day is significant for one reason or another, and even in the midst of tragedy or pain, good can come of it.
Today, October 28th, is a date in my past that I have never celebrated, and have seldom even mentioned to others. Yet it is a date in my past that is now known by well over a million people, because I memorialized it (without mentioning the specific date) in my personal testimony, How I Found Peace with God .
How I Found Peace with God  is the most important truth I have to communicate to the world, and I have linked to it from all my websites the past 17 plus years, and today it is read hundreds of times every day.
It is the day in 1977 where I tried to end my life, by first overdosing on drugs, and then after being unsuccessful in doing that, by driving my car into a light pole along the side of a road at 85 mph. Read the whole story here .
40 years ago on this date I thought I had control over my life, and that it was mine to end.
It was not.
I learned through experience that day, that God controlled my life, not me. He handed it back to me, and told me I was not done yet. In fact, I was just beginning, and he made it very clear that he had a plan and purpose for my life.
Wow, purpose! Up until then my life seemed to have little or no purpose.
Much has changed since that day 40 years ago. I am so grateful that I was a teenager in the 1970s, and not today. Otherwise, my life might have turned out much differently.
I am grateful that the psychiatrist I was forced to go see because of my suicide attempt actually believed in talking to me, rather than rushing to put me on anti-psychotic drugs. After two sessions, he was convinced that I had experienced something special with God, and that I no longer had a desire to try and take my life again (I did not believe I had the ability to do so – God was clearly in control).
If this had happened in today’s culture, I might have faced a lifetime of dependency on anti-psychotic drugs, carrying around a negative label  defined by bureaucratic psychiatrists used to justify prescribing their modern day drugs.
I am grateful that the teachers in my high school had compassion on me, and encouraged me to pursue academic ventures that suited my skills and interests.
Today, teachers are “mandatory reporters” and required to report things such as attempted suicides to social services, where a multi-billion dollar government funded child trafficking system  called “Child Protection Services” and “Foster Care” are used to kidnap hundreds of children every day for profit.
Think I am exaggerating? I assure you I am not.
I have investigated this issue for 3 years now, and you can read the evidence for yourself  and make up your own mind.
I was the minor of a single mom when this happened 40 years ago, and I was a pot smoker and drug user. Our home was not perfect, as my mom worked full time and struggled to raise her kids at a time where it was difficult for a woman without a college education to make a living.
If this had happened today, I most likely would have been removed from our imperfect home and placed into foster care, and you would not be reading this today, because my life would have taken a far different path.
Today, studies have actually been done that prove my family experience in the 1970s is still generally true today: children left in “troubled homes” fare better in life than those put into foster care. (See: Foster Care Children are Worse Off than Children in Troubled Homes – The Child Trafficking Business )
The Failure of American Christianity
Warning! What follows in this section is sure to offend and piss off a lot of people.
I don’t care. Stop reading if you don’t like someone criticizing Christians.
First, I want to make it very clear that I am distinguishing the religion of Christianity from the real, historical person of Jesus Christ, and the writings about him contained in the Bible.
I am not a Christian . You can call me a Christian if you like, and I will not be offended, because it does contain the name “Christ” of whom I am not ashamed (I Peter 4:16). In fact, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. The original disciples of Jesus as recorded in the Bible never called themselves “Christians.” That was a label attached to them by those outside their fellowship who generally opposed them. (More info here .)
Christianity is a man-made religion. It has many divisions and factions, and includes, among many others, organizations such as: Catholics, Protestants, Mormons, Evangelicals, Baptists, etc.
If there is one common characteristic I have found over the years among almost all Christians it is this: they are very arrogant. Most (certainly not all, most of my friends call themselves Christians) think that their variety of Christianity is the only correct one, and they look down on all other Christians who do not believe or act the same way they do.
Today, I find it very difficult to walk into any church service on any given Sunday. I do not feel comfortable in organized Christian religion, and I certainly do not feel welcome if I start up a conversation or begin to get to know people.
It is very clear that I no longer belong in the American “Church.”
And honestly, I don’t care. The American Church is largely a failure today anyway, in accomplishing what the true church, which is not an organization formed as a non-profit 501c3 corporation, is supposed to be doing as I see its function in the pages of the New Testament of the Bible.
The true church is an organism, functioning as a body, where Jesus Christ is the head, and his disciples are all functioning members of that body working together under the direction of the Head.
The true church does exist in America, but it is probably for the most part today an “underground” church. For the most part, it does not look much like how the organized corporate churches look.
We deal with broken and destitute people on a daily basis. They are mostly people that would not be welcome in corporate churches. They might have tattoos, they might swear and have colorful language, they might smoke, and they could be labeled as “liberals” or “conservatives” depending on their political views.
But the one thing they have in common is that their lives have been ripped apart by a corrupt and evil American culture, a culture that the corporate American church has done little to nothing to influence.
They might be a parent of autistic children who are vaccine-damaged, or a teenager who was taken out of their troubled home and sexually abused, or people whose health has been destroyed by toxic foods and a toxic environment and then made even worse by trusting in the medical system, or any other myriad of broken and troubled people who in general will find no help in the corporate church, because the culture in the corporate church is not all that much different from the American culture at large.
The perpetrators of crimes committed against these people whose lives have been devastated are by and large found in the pews of American churches each Sunday, if not leading them. See the recent Boston Globe exposé of abused children born to Catholic priests  for example.
And if you want to take an arrogant attitude and claim you are not Catholic and that this would never happen in your brand of Christianity, trust me, I can probably find similar examples of the same kinds of things happening in your particular denomination or sect. Child “protection” social workers, foster parents, medical doctors prescribing dangerous drugs or vaccines – all are attending American churches every week.
Yes, there are some good people among these professions, I understand that, but these systems have become totally corrupt and even evil, and they are only allowed to continue because the corporate church remains silent. Not only do they remain silent, many of their members participate in these corrupt systems.
I won’t. And I will not sit in a pew next to people who do.
Change is Coming – But Will it be from American Churches?
The American culture has become so corrupt, that change is inevitable if a holy and righteous God exists.
If you study the Old Testament portion of the Bible, you will clearly see that the nations God detested and eventually destroyed, had some things in common. One of the first segments of culture that usually goes bad is human sexuality. Along with that is usually child sacrifice.
This is happening in America today. Yet who are the ones getting fed up with it and coming forth to expose it? Those making headlines in exposing pedophilia today are coming out of the entertainment industry, as can be seen here , and here .
Persecution in America
When Jesus walked the earth over 2,000 years ago, he and his disciples were persecuted for preaching the truth, and exposing corruption and evil. Jesus gave up his life, willingly, as the perfect offering for ALL the sins of mankind, offering us a way to escape judgment and become part of God’s family.
But he made it clear just what kind of life a disciple of Jesus would entail:
Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it. What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Matthew 16:24-26)
The life of a disciple of Jesus Christ is a life of suffering, persecution, and shame. It is going against the crowd of popular culture, yes, even “religious” culture. It is a way that may ultimately lead to your death, because you expose the corruption and evil.
This way of following Christ is not currently the way of American Christianity. I would guess that most American Christians believe that persecution for one’s faith exists mostly in other countries, like what we saw (and still see) in China during the rise of the communist state.
The true church in America, however, knows better. But you will find fewer and fewer of these disciples in the corporate church, which is mostly functioning like other American corporations , rather than serving the true head of the church, Jesus Christ.
To everyone in America reading this let me give you my advice after serving God as a disciple of Jesus for over 38 years now. Change is coming. It is inevitable. If you are not suffering now, if your life is not falling apart now, just wait.
Look at everything you currently depend upon, everything you cherish, and be prepared to lose it.
This is the way of a disciple of Jesus Christ. Jesus was the only perfect human being to ever walk the earth, and he gave up his life, willingly, as he exposed the corruption and evil in his culture, including the “religious” culture of his time.
His death provided a way for us, his true disciples, to find true life, eternal life, by experiencing the spiritual rebirth process .
The new spiritual life that Jesus offers to us is a supernatural life. It empowers us to do things that are generally not physically possible, such as endure persecution and suffering.
It is the hard way, but it is the better way, the best way.
That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:10)
In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil men and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. (2 Timothy 3:12-13)
Do you want to go with the crowd, not rock the boat, try to appease everyone and not make waves, all in the hope for temporary peace and security?
Or do you want to count the cost as a disciple of Jesus, enter into the battle that might lead to your death, and live on in eternity in God’s kingdom?
40 years ago today I found a purpose in life, and that purpose has not changed.
What is your purpose in life?
Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a member of the Jewish ruling council. He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the miraculous signs you are doing if God were not with him.”
In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.” “How can a man be born when he is old?”
Nicodemus asked. “Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb to be born!”
Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.”
“How can this be?” Nicodemus asked.
“You are Israel’s teacher,” said Jesus, “and do you not understand these things? I tell you the truth, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony. I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things?
No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven–the Son of Man. Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.
This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed.
But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God.“ (John 3:1-21 emphasis added)
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