Did I turn my back on Jehovah's True Organization?
At the time I prayed this prayer I was inactive but was planning to go to the meeting at the urging of my family.
There is the answer to your question, You said a personal prayer from the heart, God answered your prayer while you were inactive so His grace is not dependant on the religion you half belonged to! According to JWs Jah is not interested in those who are only thinking to go to the meetings.
God is outside of the Watchtower, I had the same experience as you.
I've done exactly as you've done - prayed and agonized, wondering what was wrong with me, why didn't I feel close to Jehovah, begged and begged him to help, and all this while I was a JW in good standing (they still think I am !) Guess whta answer I received ? Nothing. No calm, no peace, just more of the same. Maybe it was because I was trying to go through the organization rather than to God directly, I don't know.
I do know that lately the times I've felt most at peace have been when I've been reading and meditating on other religious writings, i.e. Tao or Buddhism. So what does prove? Does God want me involved in those religions? I don't think so, but if there is a god/spirit/creator out there, maybe we need to reach him/it each in the way that fits us individually. I know that's anathema to the Governing Body, because they would have us use them and only them as the way to get to know God. Which is why so many JWs are stressed, sick, rude, depressed and sometimes downright hateful. There is no peace of God permeating that organization; if there had been, I would have felt it, as would all the others who have made the break or are in the midst of doing so.
If you want to read a good book, try Eric Hoffer's "True Believer". I've just finished reading it through twice. Although not particularly about religions, the parallels with the WTS are incredible and it will answer many of your questions about the seeming unity/efficiency/doctrinal certainty that exists in Watchtower land, as well as why you are feeling the way you do right now. If you're a Star Trek fan, remember the Borg, and how getting disconnected from the collective was totally unsettling, like being thrown into a void? You're starting to make your way through that void, but the good news is that your true being, your true humanity, is trying to make its way to the fore. Be patient and let it happen. You probably will be very pleased at the person that develops.
I remember when I first started studying with the witnesses. They always made it clear that "Without the Org and it's publications, you can not come to a clear understanding of Gods word. Well, the bible states different.
I have posted this verse many times but, I am going to post it again.
1 John 2 27 But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will  abide in Him.
: Did I turn my back on Jehovah's True Organization?
: Are there any of you out there that feel like you have a real personal relationship with God with or without religion in your life? Do you still call God Jehovah? Do you call him Jesus?
It's impossible to have a "personal relationship" with a God who is absolutely silent.
: The reason I am asking is because of something I cannot forget. When I was going through my emotional breakdown a few years back I prayed to Jehovah like I never prayed before. I must have been having a panic attack.
Jehovah never answered you, did He?
: I was so confused wondering if God even existed at all. I was in my room one night just thinking and thinking about my future and wondering what the heck I was going to do with my life.
Most of us wonder this. It's part of life. Get used to it.
: So I pored my heart out to Jehovah and I asked him are you really even out there? Who am I praying to? Prove you exist. I went on and on and told him everything I was feeling. And right after I said Amen
Good thing you used the magic word "amen." Otherwise, Jehovah God would have let your prayer fly right by him.
: I felt this unbelievable feeling of relief and calmness. I could not believe it I was so amazed! Never in my life did I feel such a sigh of relief!
This sort of thing happens all the time with we people. There is no evidence that it means "Jehovah" or any other God has decided to help us. It only means that we "feel good" after asking for help from that (or any) God.
: This is why I am posing these question to you. At the time I prayed this prayer I was inactive but was planning to go to the meeting at the urging of my family. I confessed everything to the Elders and was privately reproved. A few months later I left the KH for good. It has been four years now.
So far so good. After all, you were leaving a lying, deceiving, hateful, manipulative and self-serving materialistic Cult.
: I have been reading all these posts and trying to gather information myself about the Org. But part of me just doesn't want to let go for fear that they really are God's people. I know many of you are going to say that just shows how badly you have been brainwashed. I am not dismissing that either.
The facts speak for themselves. Do the WTS leaders speak for God, or do they not speak for God? They claim to speak for God. What do the facts show, and what do their excuses about their lies about those facts show? You're on your own on this one. I'm not your nanny. Nor am I your spiritual leader. You are truly on your own. Read the evidence. Read the facts. Make your choice. Only you will be able to live with your choice. Are JW's true Christians who show REAL love for each other, or not? Did you find REAL and unconditional love from them before you left? Would you find REAL and unconditional love from them if you questioned the doctrines and policies of their leaders in Brooklyn?
: I would just like to know what all of you think? I mean Everyone: Religious people Non-Religious people, Athiests, Agnostics, Everyone.
:Is it possible to have a relationship with God without religion?
Yes, methinks. Religion fucks everything up. ALL religions and belief systems fuck everything up. If God cares, go direct to God. Don't let some humans try to tell you how to do it, or what you have to do to do it.
Personally I think that if God exists, he's been on vacation in Hawaii since the dawn of man 3,000,000 years ago. So I cannot blame God for not answering my prayers. He's on vacation and probably won't answer his cell phone until he is ready to finish his vacation.
I hope this helps. I am sincere in my comments. And if you don't like my observations, may I play some beautiful music on the piano for you? I can do that.
Music on the piano? Yeah,I`d like that..I`d like that a whole lot...OUTLAW
as many have said i think youre feelings are normal. i have a different perspective from you because i consider myself somewhere between agnostic and atheist so i do not fear god or fear displeasing him/her and i have no desire to "find the truth" . well that wasn't much help was it, but good luck i think you will be happier in the end.
Thank you everyone for your thoughts. I really appreciate hearing what you all have to say.
Farkel: Your comments did not upset me. I found the last few kind of funny. Thanks.
I forgot who posted this:
If you ever had a good cry, did you afterward feel the same peace that you felt after your long prayer?
Thank you. I never even thought of that. That is so true. I just assumed that it was God making me feel better. But as Farkel pointed out or asked me, 'Did God answer me'. I still am not sure. I thought I was sure at that moment but I could be wrong.
Thanks again everyone!!!
I have been afraid to pray. I will work on it. I will start reading my bible too.
But part of me just doesn't want to let go for fear that they really are God's people.
YOU are God's people. If what "they" say makes sense to you, then go with it. If not, then go with yourself. And, if I may offer this conjecture: you wouldn't have a "fear that they are really God's people" unless you'd already seen that they have been wrong so many times in so many ways that they possibly (read probably) are not God's people. It throws the burden of decision back on your shoulders...a burden they never trained you to bear.
It's a new experience; scary, but simply and only the fear of the unknown.
THEY are absolutely positively unequivocally NOT Jehovah's True Organization. Dare them to prove they are; they can't.
I'm not a jw, never was. I'm here because I have a dear neighbor who is a jw, and she is definitely struggling in all these areas of her life after 37 years in the borg. I have been trying to understand the way people think when they get into the borg, and what helped them leave.
...I know the experience you spoke about when you prayed--it is different from feeling exhausted from crying; it is a sense of God's presence, and the realization that He actually heard you. It is totally unexpected experience, something I've never been able to recreate by effort. It is something you can't make up and can't forget. It's something an agnostic just won't understand...
Anyway, I agree with this statement:
While I don't really think people need to be part of an org to have a relationship with God,there is nothing wrong with being part of one too.The social part of it is nice.
At my church, there are lots of great people. Fellowship is terrific. People come because we WANT to, not because we need to prove anything to anybody. People are free to discuss/debate/disagree with our pastor (but not during his sermon--too rude!) or whomever might be leading a Sunday adult ed lesson--it gets pretty fun that way, actually! When I read about the spoonfeeding that jws have had to submit to, I think I'd just go crazy! Even though it's hard to hear other points of view at times, but it can be very very good for you.
I've been to many churches--about nine over 15 years (moved alot). I came to appreciate the special viewpoints they provide. Churches can give moral support--the way it was meant to be given! Members help to encourage each other when they are struggling, being tempted different ways, etc. The local church seems like a family to me. When you find a healthy church, you grow better than you could by yourself. You are challenged by love, not guilt.
So, anyway, if you are searching for the God Who Is, just tell Him that! Stick with that prayer, and be ready to let Him change your courses. God doesn't save the theologically correct: He saves those who desire to know and to love Him and are willing to pursue Him. Keep baring your soul and trusting God, which is just how you prayed. God will honor that prayer and show you the rest! And I do hope that you will find a good church someday, and find it to be a blessing, even though it's not a "requirement"!
"Love Never Fails",