So, last thursday my mom had a outpatient surgery at the local clinic. Across the seating area a couple of people were talking and I got the sense that they were JWs, though they didn't say anything specific to the org., they did use some catch phrases(brother-to a middle aged black gentleman, by an older white woman). We were discussing recipes and diet issues, and I mentioned that I had never had brisket until this woman in my church made one. I observed that it seemed to be a Texas thing(in response to the guy speaking of his Texan grandpas recipe). WELL, in any case, of course their religion came up (after I finagled the conversation a little myself).I mentioned that my mom was a JW and she said, OH, she must have joined the truth after you grew up, since you mentioned church, right? I told her I had been raised in the "Organization", but never was baptised and left at 15 for reasons that I later questioned. She then looked very knowingly at me and made some comment about the world attracting me. . .I said I joined a religion more restrictive than the JWs so that wasn't the issue, and I revisited the decision as an adult and realized that my reasons were valid and then I learned even more reasons why I could never be a JW. At this point, she moved across the waiting room (likely guessing that I would feel free to say the reasons and not wanting them broadcast throughout Group health) and sat next to me. Very concerned of course. I gave her a partial accounting of my reasons. The control of the WT, the stand on blood, the 1914 thing( I said I was there, and you were there, and you know as well as I did that they totally misled people about it and later tried to blame the brothers and sisters for their expectations. She acknowledged that and said "but they made a big public apology(at some convention that I apparently missed). I said they were guilty of false prophecy. She said "you are a prophet if you say anything from the Bible that is in the Bible" I said, If a prophet speaks something that does not come to pass as a PROPHECY, there is a consequence for that. It is not merely the repeating of Gods word that is condemed. She then gave me several more Organizational excuses for false prophecy or definitions of prophecy. In any case I said I don't accept what the WT says as any kind of authority, and because of their past, I have no confidence that they would tell me the truth in any case. We touched many other issues, transfusions, the change in blood policy, etc. I didn't focus, because #1 the room was full, I wanted to be a good witness of all that is screwed up in the WT to any Non JWs listening. #2 The guy across the room was likely an elder and I wanted him to hear (oh, I didn't pick on elders, or individuals-just the organizational teaching/policy/lies)#3 I knew I wouldn't see her again, and she wouldn't try to contact me and one of us would be called out of the room to accompany their patient(mom or spouse) so I wanted as much on the table as possible. She really let me go on, and responded several times when I mentioned changes. She asked me about the trinity (because of the church I go to) I said I can't tell her anything about it-I don't know. No one KNOWS anything. I put my faith in that Jesus Christ saves, and do what I read in the Bible the best I can, and figure that God can't hold ignorance against me, after I have done all I can to figure out what is right and wrong. She said, but if you IGNORE what is clearly taught. . .I said, it isn't clearly taught-thats why so many people argue about it. And what the org clearly teaches now is not what they clearly taught 50-100 years ago. Russell would be kicked out of the org. (I actually think she is still musing over that!) She kind of wondered with my "I can't know everything attitude" that I didn't go to the WT since they "tried the hardest to find the truth". I said "for example, about birthdays, I am totally convinced there is nothing in the scriptures that forbids them, and I could not go door to door preaching to people against something which I believe is not wrong at all. Thats just birthdays. How could I in any good conscience preach what I believe to be a lie? I may not know some things doctrinally, but I know plenty about the WT org that i simply cannot support. She tried to point out religious leaders. I said if there is a body of baptist high ups who claim to have direct inspiration from God, I have never heard of them. I said I have the right in my church to nudge my friend next to me and ask what the heck is he saying if the preacher says something ridiculous-and she won't report me to the elders! I don't have to take what any man says to me in church to be inspired utterances (unless of course he is reading scripture or I think he is particularly led by God) If I have a question at church bible study, I can ask the darn question! Even if it might challenge some teaching. And I am not going to be counseled for a QUESTION.
I missed so many other things, the perverted baptism, the questionable translations, the dishonest quotations(that I have seen for myself), the twisted logic and on and on. Sorry to ramble so, but it felt really good to let it all out:) And after she had admitted that she didn't agree with everything(???!!!) I had to wonder how she could go door to door and preach it to people. She really didn't have an answer. I did get a lot said, but I actually did take a breath a few times and she shared too. I let her know that I respect that people try to do the right thing, but I think in this organization, they have been sorely misled.