It just breaks my heart when I read some of the posts on this websites and hear all of the horror stories about people and families suffering because of what the church or religion did to them. Not just JW's or Mormons, but Catholics, Born-Agains are also included in this group. I bet you could find just as many disgruntle ex-Catholics and ex-Born-Agains out in the world who have been severly hurt by their church. I think we as people just give too much power to the church or religion that we lose ourselves in the process. Only I can make me happy not a church, pastor or religion. Most of the posts by ex-jws 99% of them are bashing JW's and the WTS and how they ran to another church for healing and happiness. Until you heal from one trauma running to another church for happiness will only lead to more disappointment. I know an ex-jws girl that went to 3 churches after leaving JW's and she is still not happy. Happiness is not in a church or religion it is in the person themselves. Trust me I ran to about 5 churches when I left JW's and none of them made me happy until I took control of my own life and defined what happiness is to me. Not what the minister told me how to be happy with Jesus Christ. I love Jehovah and Jesus but they can't make me happy only I can.
When will people "stop" relying on "churches and religions" for happiness?
I think we as people just give too much power to the church or religion that we lose ourselves in the process. Only I can make me happy not a church, pastor or religion.
You hit the nail on the head there! Church is meant for fellowship, it isn't meant to be the be all and end all of faith - if a church, or a pastor or whatever becomes the focus on which you hang all your hope, you have taken your eyes off God.
The other night I was chatting with a girl and it turned out she is a very devout christian. We had a pleasant conversation but all the while she kept wondering how I could possibly be happy or have love without Jesus.
I found it fascinating that she could not comprehend this... it was as if there was a mental block that prevented her from even considering the possibility that someone could be loving and happy with Jesus.
Most of the posts by ex-jws 99% of them are bashing JW's and the WTS and how they ran to another church for healing and happiness.
I don't think you really came to that number scientifically. There are a ton of ex-JW athiests/agnostics/freethinkers on here. There are Wiccans, Catholics, Muslims. My gut tells me that 99% of exJWs are irreligious, or at very least out of the church habit.
You may be right about the happiness thing.
I agree 100% with your post. But would like to add my personal views:
Jesus started a faith not a religion - there is a big difference
Religious institutions are made by man for the purpose of dominating and restricting other men in their worship of God - while they can do a lot of good, they often do more harm to people.
Christ came and freed us not only from sin and death - but from spiritual slavery to men, for if you are "in Christ" you are free.
Man was given his own conscience to make up his own mind on matters and religious faith is a personal choice and should not be dictated to us by others.
Any "christian" person who comes to you with a message of fear - is a false teacher as Jesus did not use fear to gain converts.
Thanks for your post. Lilly
When you look outside of yourself to be happy - you never will be.
Peace and contentment w/oneself are part of being truly happy. No one, no religion, no "thing" will bring true happiness.
I agree w/you; it starts w/yourself.
ISN'T THAT HAPPIFYING? (WTB&TS verbage)
I agree with you. I think Jesus message was that the Jewish folks did not need a priesthood to commune with their Creator. And that communicating with God was not only for the rich and powerful, but for everyone. Men perverted Jesus simple message.
Religious unhappiness is certainly not restricted to JW's but religious organizations have put restrictions on people based on fear causing so much heart ache.
Agreed, and good post! What really bothers me is the close-minded people who make their beliefs known that Jesus is the ONLY way to be happy. I have respect for those who are happy in their faiths, just as I'm happy without mine. However, when they begin to push that their faith is the ONLY way to live, and all other ways are wrong, that's when I get upset.
Closed-minded people have seem to have difficulty learning or maturing themselves. I also have to wonder if they REALLY are happy, or if they're just telling you they're truly happy.
When will people like you quit telling people like me that we don't need church?
Do you get "happiness" be denigrating those of us that attend church?
Why do you feel the need to shove your values down my throat?
For every one person that is still "unhappy" due to their church situation I can produce at least 10 times as many that are. What have you proved? Nothing.
I am moving along now.