If they disagree with my opinion, I welcome it and I find it interesting. When I am called a fraud, that hurts a little. But I get over it.
I would like to convery some insight here that some on this forum I think do not realize.
There is a world within the Organization, we all know that. The idea that we are right and everyone else is wrong.
But there is ANOTHER WORLD WITHIN THE WORLD OF THE ORGANIZATION. And that is those that are in "special service." Bethelites, Circuit Overseers, Missionaries. It's a strange world where we are told we are "serving" the brothers full-time. Ask the other posters on here who have been in "special service." Its strange at the meetings, in service, and to be in Bethel as a Bethelite because you are essentially living off the Society. And when someone attains "privileges" in the Organization, as a brother, less and less people disagree with you, at least openly. Almost everyone follows what you say. Yes, some disagree with you sometimes, but in the majority of cases, you have power over them, so their disagreement is not a big deal.
When I graduated from MTS, I was the youngest student in the class by three years. I was a ministerial servant. And yet I immediately had elders asking me questions about procedure. That can get into your head, and it did mine.
Then I was appointed an elder while in my foreign assignment in South America. The Branch told me to be careful, because the local brothers will rarely disagree with a missionary.
Then when I was appointed a C.O., I had a lot of power. The brother who trained me in the circuit work told me to be careful, use the power, but do not abuse it. Even when the District Overseer gave me counsel, he was careful. After all, I was a missionary trained here in the U.S.
When I needed to go to New York for medical treatment, a Bethel driver would pick me up. I would always get a nice room, NEVER a roommate, for the entire month or two I was in New York. I got brother Sydlik's Patterson room twice.
Then, when I came back from my assignment, I was reappointed immediately. I gave the other elders counsel on being zealous, wow, what a difference in zeal in the preaching work from there to here. They became resentful, and looked for ways to counsel me. Yes, I had received counsel before, but now I was on the hotseat. That started my journey to being an ex-elder, and my eventual awakening to the real truth.
So, those of us that have been circuit overseers or missionaries or Bethelites for years, it is quite a shock to be challenged so openly.
Then I came on this forum. I was used to asking others' opinions, as a way of showing 'humility', or so I thought. I never dreamed that anyone would doubt my experiences or my position as a C.O. and a missionary. I am not saying it is right, I am just saying how I felt. I was shocked and angry that someone would say I am a fraud, or doubt my experience. Even when I went to that BBQ last week, I was asked about my experiences as a missionary and C.O. Of course, they know me in person, and have seen my hundreds of slides and talks, etc.
I still post, I still read your posts, sometimes when I get challenged on my experience I get tempted to put my passport photo and my Tarjeta de Residencia (Resident Card) from the country I was in, and scan all of my assignment letters from the Society to prove who I am. But then the objection could be raised that I FAKED all of that stuff somehow. And what would be the point?
All of this is growth for me. I will continue to write my experiences in the Organization, I will continue to learn from all of you, I will continue to get angry at some of you, then realize some of you are right, and maybe sometimes, I am right.
I love posting here sometimes, I don't like it sometimes, but as many have told me on here. Welcome to the real world.