You Can Encourage An Inactive Christian!
Yesu Kristo, regarding your comment:
first, they instruct people to avoid inactive ones and to shun them and to treat them the same as DA'd or DF'd ones,
I'm not sure about this. As far as I am aware, Inactive ones are those who have not turned in their FS reports for more than 6 months. In other words, they are those who have stopped coming to meetings or preaching, without officially sending a letter of DA. Are inactive ones actually shunned or treated as disfellowshipped ones? Since you have used the word 'they instruct people', can you please provide sources where JWs are told to shun and avoid inactive ones?
Every so often somebody in the congregation tells me that if I ever want to go out in service, just let them know. They would be glad to go with me. And it makes me feel SO encouraged!
Oh Great,,,I was left alone for the longest time, Hopefully they don't start calling on me and my family again. I Love how, people only leave because they miss something the world has to offer, or are depressed, Never and I mean never do you hear they left because they have facts that prove this religion false, or They leave because they found there love for God in a different path..
Another reason is because the elders are supposed to visit the inactive ones, but they don't have the time nor the manpower...so they are using the flock to search'em out and find them then tell the elders where to go get'em...and what kind of encouragement will they give them...
The elders are so busy that they can't do all that is required of them....I know they get letters that the congregation doesn't know about....don't think they don't know about the scandals in the org, yet, they have to keep a straight face and business as usual.....if you want to remain in the org...
In a little while...we may be able to talk to the DF'd ones...never say never...the org. wants to bring more sheep in and they can't bring them in and then DF them...folks will talk... I had a friend that was studying, she never told me she was studying to be a witness, she invited me to her baptism, for a while she never mentioned it again, then one day she said, they want me to disassociate with ones who are not witnesses...so she bounced...I wish I did the same thing...me dummy..
I'm a witness, don't pay no mind to what is written, they have to fill up a page...go to the meetings if you like the friends, play the game, but follow your own God...because if this is all true about God and we are going to be judged individually, when it comes to ones turn to stand up, saying you are a Jehovah Witness ain't going to give you know points with God...Jehovah Witness is not a password into Paradise/Heaven.
Drearyweather, I'm inactive and shunned by all except my parents, who are more distant then when I was active. My family includes several elders and pioneers. They can't get over the fact that I don't attend anymore (I'm a former bethelite, international construction worker and pioneer and I've risked my life refusing a blood transfusion), and I've explained to them that due to the child abuse legal and policy issues as well as controversial doctrine changes I can't wrap my head around (which somehow Makes me a spiritual loser according to wt because I can't shrug off the nagging thoughts due to seeing through the bs) so that I can't go in service and teach strangers what I can't even believe anymore for obvious reason the family agrees with even. Deep down they know I'm right, but the cognitive dissonance kicks in hard and it's easier for them to just shun me then be reminded that they could be wrong. I mentioned the above activities, because the CD is louder as they know I was all in and zealous for the "truth"; now I'm not and it confuses them, so it's easier for them to justify themselves to themselves by shunning in the form of "marking" so I'm out of sight out of mind. It gets hard because my nephew is looking forward to the birth of his first child, I'm not invited to any family gatherings etc. and we were all super close. But I am unable to fake it, so I am shunned because I choose it to live in truth. As far as wt policy, I think some convention talks addressed shunning inactive recently as well as it is ingrained in the wt social culture and reinforced by dubs like my family who are held as examples' so if they do it to me, others will follow their example and do it to others.
They don't even invite my kids to memorial anymore. I don't attend for about 6 years now. My last one was very surreal and very void of uplifting spirituality as described in comments above. Lots of just going through the motion and get out so we can go to dinner. I live in socal and most people seem to enjoy the memorial as an occasion to dress up and visit, believing they are doing the right thing. I was highly disturbed when I read freemasonry rituals involving passing the emblems and not partaking called the black mass which seemed pretty similar to the jw celebration and so I'd rather not be a part of rejecting Jesus even unknowingly. It seems there is some truth to giving away energy in rituals, at least according to esoteric sources. So, I'd rather just leave it all behind and be the kind of person Jesus taught us to be, kind, compassionate, courageous, truthful and willing to reject religious dogma that seekers to diminish and control the sheep.
Blessings to all of you who are caught in the middle with family still "in" and those fading; it's emotionally hard. Each should do what your gut tells you to do' fade, go all out, or participate for the love of family members who would be shattered to leave. It's very personal for each one of us. a bethel sister once told me when faced with an illness, "knowledge is power and chases away fear, so go get informed and you'll know what you need to do." Great advice, so research , observe and witness what is happening around you without judgement and you will be able to discern truth. With that you will create and maintain your own personal power and navigate the cult.
"You can encourage an inactive Christian."
Really? You can invite them to the memorial/special talk/assembly BUT if you run into them in public you are "encouraged" to shun them. You just can not make this sh*t up.
I wish I could tell you my story of how my spouse and I have been "encouraged" by one particular Elder. The abuse has been incredible. Even if I had one ounce of even considering to "come back to Jehovah", this behavior of this Elder has slammed any hope of us returning. The true colors of this organization and how the majority of these "shepherds" treat the flock is just mind numbing. I'd rather take a life long dirt nap than spend eternity with these clowns.
My sister is inactive but sees my mother on a regular basis and the other JWs speak to her too. I am DF and my mother wont have anything to do with me and I am shunned. Not that I am missing out as my mother is a bitter negative elderly woman who thought she would never grow old in this system or have to live without my Dad. :-/ x
@Awakenednow and Disassociated Lady 2,
Great comments....(remember hearing those words after the meeting even though you may have not commented or just read a scripture). You both nailed it....
I believe in Jehovah and Jesus Christ, don't care if they are the same or separate...someone died for our past and future sins...that's the meat and potatoes, if you wish to believe....
Jesus is the way and the org. better get that soon, if they intend for this religion to continue...
Don't worry folks the friends see the colors of the elders....more and more folks are finding out that the elders are just men....or should I say robots...they may not believe what they read but they have to distribute the information anyways, whether they agree or not....I get phone calls from the friends, just to talk and wow do they talk, they tell me things they can't tell others...to me I already know about the org. but I guess some are just waking up...
So, we are told to search out the inactive ones....then tell the elders....ummmmm, I hope they don't ask them no questions to promote them from DA to DF.
What I seem to see in my area is Witnesses trying to walk a balancing act.
They were told to avoid inactive ones who do "things displeasing to Jehovah" (talk about vague) and simultaneously they are to be encouraging to inactive ones who are one and the same!
Since these unspecified "things displeasing to Jehovah" are not technically disfellowshipping offenses, people have to decide for themselves how to "treat" them.
So it most often lands on the side of avoidance or awkwardness or simply what kind of mood the JW is in that day.
To me, the bigger picture is this points to a power struggle or confusion in the leadership. They cannot send a clear direction down the channels because no one is really flying the plane at the moment.
Do Not Give Up
19, 20. Why should we maintain a positive attitude regarding a prodigal child?
19 Helping a “prodigal” child ‘come to his senses’ requires patience and can be a challenge to parents and others. But do not give up. “Jehovah is not slow respecting his promise, as some people consider slowness, but he is patient with you because he does not desire any to be destroyed but desires all to attain to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9) We have the Scriptural assurance that Jehovah wants people to repent and live. In fact, he has taken the initiative in making an arrangement to reconcile humans to himself. (2 Corinthians 5:18, 19) His patience has made it possible for millions to come to their senses.—Isaiah 2:2, 3
According to Cambridge Dictionary, when someone "comes to his senses", this means that he is starting to understand that he has been behaving stupidly. Thanks Gibbering Buddies for calling us "Inactive Ones" STUPID.