With the help of friends and long-term TLS members, I’ve been thinking about how I want to grow with you all in 2016. Our first three years together have been quite a journey. I’ve learned a lot. I think we all have. We’ve built a solid community where it is safe to explore, deconstruct, and reconstruct our spiritual beliefs in a respectful, supportive, and nourishing environment. I hear very often that there is nothing like TLS out there on the Internet.
At the same time, TLS must grow and change. There are two forces driving this. The first is that I want to spend more time creating content and courses for TLS. The second is that TLS has become a full-time job for me. That’s what I want, but, with the current structure, it isn’t affordable. With about 200 paying members at $7 per month, that’s only $1,400. That’s not enough to keep a roof over my head.
I’ve been looking for a way to accomplish three things: Give more great stuff to TLS members; spend more of my time each day doing what I love to do (creating courses for you); and growing TLS with more members and more income so we can afford to keep going and growing.
Making this work is a big job. Right now, just managing and responding to the FB group and our forums is a full-time job. Also, there are technical issues that need to be fixed to allow membership to grow. All of this, practically speaking, takes time and money. One piece of good news is that I’m supported by an excellent team of volunteers who are long-term TLS members. They are helping with moderating the forums and they are a great sounding board for me, as well. And I have consultants and experts I trust to help me with the technical issues and more.
More Great Stuff
Deconstruction usually hurts. For most of us, it begins with experiences of being made outcast, threatened, or even abused in a church setting. I saw that from both sides, and had to change. The spiritual anguish was almost unbearable. I had to take my spirituality apart and rebuild it. I did my deconstruction with no guide or plan. Over the years, I’ve learned that there are tools we can use, and I want to share them with you.
Here are some of the ideas that I’ll be turning into courses in 2016:
- How to Be Spiritually Independent
- How to Lose your Faith without Losing your Mind
- How to Recover from Spiritual Abuse
- Deconstruction and Reconstruction
- The Stages of Deconstruction
- What is Your Spiritual End Game?
When I create a small course, it will be free for TLS members. TLS members will receive a large discount on the big courses. That’s the first great new feature. Other new benefits may include: Greater depth of response in moderation as the TLS leadership team grows in responding more on the FB group and the forums; a reorganization of the forums based on your interests; video conferencing where we could perhaps run some webinars or even Q&As around different issues and topics that interest us; training for community facilitators; and more!
As you can see, TLS will be offering you a lot more in 2016. And that brings me to the last thing I want to say in this post.
The Price Increase
To free up my time to do all of this, I need help getting out of the financial hole I’m in now: at $1,400/month total income before business expenses, I’m not keeping a roof over my head. The ultimate solution to that is to grow TLS and bring in lots of new folks. But that will take time. In the meantime, I’m hoping you will help out by accepting a price increase for TLS members effective on or before December 1, 2015.
All of you current members have some pricing options. You can learn about them here: The Price Increase: How it will work for existing members.
NOTE: The price increase will be just a few dollars. And I won’t force it on you; there will be options. Even after the increase, the cost of TLS will be a good deal less than other, similar sites that aren’t half as much fun!
Learn the history that brought us to this price increase here: The Lasting Supper Growing in 2016: Part 2: How We Got Where We Are