Considered for Recommendation as Elder but Declined

by ProfCNJ 25 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • ProfCNJ

    Hi folks. One of the elders was sent to our house to talk to me the possibility of being recommended as elder. He did not know however that one of the elders who is a friend of mine had already divulged this future meeting. I am so thankful to my elder-friend for giving me a heads-up so I could prepare and do a personal reflection.

    When I heard the news from him, I had a mixture of emotions. I had some euphoric moments having the chance and privilege to serve as one of them. However, while I felt joy at the start, when emotions have subsided and I began to rationalize things, I came to the conclusion that I cannot accept the privilege = responsibility.

    With numerous experiences I have read here from former elders, and based on my personal observations in our congregation, being an elder can just cause additional burden/stress:

    1) An elder is expected to be always upbuilding, showing care, and supportive. Not only himself but his entire family should show impeccable character/behavior in the congregation. His family should be a model for the brothers. Problem is, I am just human, my family are all human. I cannot stand negative comments against me and my family just because I am occupying this lofty position or privilege. I know my personal weaknesses, as well as members of my family. I cannot be cheerful and appear nice all the time, let alone be a perfect example for all inside the congregation. I can act like one, but that is not who I am. A person cannot just always hide his real personality, including his weaknesses.

    2) An elder has to carry weighty responsbilities in attending various organizational meetings - within the congregation, circuit, district. Add to these the sheperding work, and last but the most stressful - disciplining and disfellowshiping. During these committe meetings, there would be conflicts for sure. Since I am younger than most elders, how can I drive a point without sounding as being boastful or conceited? I have the tendency sometimes to really prove a point and be very assertive. If I will just have to submit myself most of the time and just obey as told, better remain with a lesser privilege, right?

    3) As an elder, you have to defend always WT teachings and organizational arrangements. This one I cannot bear after realizing flaws in the WT teachings.

    Hence, I have to just beg off from the elder's invitation. He asked me of scriptural basis for the decline. I told him James 3:1. (That elder is also close to me, considering he is also an older friend. I told him I am not emotionally prepared to handle additional stress what with the experiences of other elders that were made privy to me by my elder friend.)

    One thing though I noticed during our brief conversation. He told me a number of elders of his batch have already stepped down, but some have re-accepted the privilege. I told myself, if he really was motivating me to accept the assignment, why he had to share this story? I felt there was some loneliness as he speaks. I can see thru in his eyes he is also burdened but could not express it in the open.

    Anyway, I talked to my wife about the meeting. I felt relieved. I don't know what is going to happen next. I believe worship and serving the Most High is a personal one. I know only Jehovah God and the Lord Jesus Christ know what is best for me and my family. :)

    Thanks for hearing me out. :)

  • besty

    good decision - interesting that you are posting on JWN already

    there are a lot of ex-elders here, a few current elders, but I would guess you might be the only member of the "I was going to be appointed but decided to post on JWN about declining" class :-)

  • ABibleStudent

    Welcome ProfCNJ, You chose wisely. Famiy is way more important than serving a printing, print distribution, and real estate holding corporation. Since elders are the 1st line management of the WTBTS corporation, they probably have the most stress since many probably see the WTBTS for what it is and feel conflicted about Mother's directions to/prophesies for the flock.

    I hope that your decisions will not cause you any pain and that your wife appreciates how much more you love her than being an elder.

    Peace be with you and everyone, who you love,


  • sarahsmile

    Bibical proof what a joke.

  • Phizzy

    I declined the "privilege" many years ago, mainly because I did not believe Holy Spirit was involved at all in the process of selection, and I wished to serve my Bros. and Sisters, and had observed that many a M.S, once appointed an Elder, no longer actually did much of worth to the flock.

    I eventually resigned as a M.S too, then shortly after I began my "fade".

    I think you have made a wise decision, may you eventually free yourself, and those you love, from what is "evidently" not God's Organization.

  • Splash

    So he asked you to justify your personal decision scripturally.

    You would have a lot more of that coersion and manipulation if you'd accepted.

    Funny how they put the screws on you to justify something which doesn't need it, but you ask them about their law on beards....


  • BroMac

    Splash like

  • Julia Orwell
    Julia Orwell


    Good move. I'm just a 'sister' so I had no say in anything or any responsibilities, but I believe it's tough being an elder. And, now you're seeing that the WT is not all it's cracked up to be and contains serious theological and scriptural flaws, no honest person would want to willingly take on more of it.

  • Fernando

    Excellent decision - to avoid problems and hypocrisy.

    The "ruling religious clergy class" (Pharisees) and their Governing Body (Sanhedrin) will not inherit the kingdom, and so seek to prevent others too (Matt 23:13,15).

    How and why is it a privilege to be part of their brood of vipers?

    When Jesus was on earth did he lead people to, or away from, the elders and Governing Body?

    (Why does the "true religion" secretly blind its followers to the "Good News" according to Paul, Moses, Isaiah and Psalms?)

  • Splash

    If you think you can never do enough as a publisher or MS, you want to try being an elder.

    These guys give up their wives and families to try to be good enough. It is guilt x 10, and when the CO comes to town you're reminded of your place in things.

    Do more! Do more!

    And when you are done there are no lasting thanks, just a bitter wife and a stupefied congregation that couldn't care less.


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