Since I stopped being a JW I haven't prayed. So the other day I went to supper at my parent's house who are still JW's, and they prayed before we ate. It was a very strange feeling, and it stirred up alot of weird feelings. Since I stopped going to the Kingdom Hall I've had issues with trying to figure out if there really is a God. After your beliefs are shattered it leaves you wondering if anyone is really out there. I decided that I was going to try and pray again to see if it helped. But after two years of not praying, it felt the same as it did when I stopped. It just feels like no one is there on the other end of the prayer, and honestly it really never did. I don't know if I'm ready to write God off. But I don't feel like any organized religion is going to have the answers I seek. Maybe I'm just taking life too seriously. But I just don't know what to believe anymore. I would like to think that there's something better after this life. I remember when I was a kid and my parents were saying things like aren't you thankful to Jehovah for this, or for that? I was a little thankful, I thought God cared. But now I am starting to think that God isn't there. Maybe he never was. Maybe he just doesn't want to answer my prayers. Do any of you feel a connection to God? Do you still pray?
Do you still Pray?
Prayer is cheap therapy. Very few people can be completely honest with themselves. The idea that you are talking to someone who can see through your disguise can provide powerful insights.
If you practice rational self talk where you challenge the bull shit rationalizations going through your head you can get to the point where you benefit even more than prayer.
Prayer stands in the way of the important insight that if things are going to happen you've got to make it happen - not God.
I disagree, I am having the same problem. I believe God exsists but I'm not sure that he hears my prayers. Reading the book of Romans and learning about Grace and that we can have a direct relationship with Jesus without mediation from the GB is really helping. Don't give up on believing just because you're not associated with the organization.
While I was still "in" I never prayed (except for meetings etc). I didn't pray for a long time afterwards either. I have started praying now, and I do think He listens. I have experienced healing through prayer, and I know others that have had their lives affected through prayer. The one thing to remember is that we can ask for anything, we just might not always like the answer we get, and sometimes it takes a long time (or so it seems to us) to have a prayer answered.
Hopes this helps,
The JWs made prayer a stilted kind of thing with all their requirements, you know the use of the name Jehovah in all our prayers, the always saying at the end "in Jesus name", not encouraging us to simply speak to God like we would a friend but instead as if he is on a throne far away. That kind of prayer is not how to get close to God. In fact it really removes us from God. Prayer should be spontaneous and informal. It does not need to be something done at night or in the morning, nor does it need a place or time. Prayer can be just a personal thought or passing glance at God, a rememberance of him without words. Sometimes just the request for faith expressed by just saying, "God help me to have faith" is just what we need. No formalism, no anything, just a few words. Put out of your mind the JW prayer and reach out in your own personal way even in just a thought.
I wish you peace and happiness, Dustin.
I still pray, and I never stopped. For some reason that I don't understand, I have always been able to separate the God thing from the Witness thing, so just because I left the Witnesses didn't in the least mean that I left God. Now, it stirred up a whole bunch of questions about who he/she/it is really, name, affiliation (if any), and requirements, but I have made peace with that on the grounds that if God wants me to know bad enough then I'll find out. Otherwise, I won't sweat it.
Yes but I don't beleive in the Bible God or that God is a person. I just pray by habit mainly,,when I was I witness I would pray all the time and it is hard to break the habit. I think it can be a good thing even though I don't beleive in a God,,it brings my intentions to my conscious mind and I think that is a good thing.
Do you still Pray?
Life is too complicated to navigate on my own.
I've never ceased to believe in an Allmighty Creator.
The rules and laws that apply to science, give comfort that there has to be an intelligent Creator-Designer. Mankind is just so out of touch with his spirituality, especially modern westernized man, that it can be almost impossible for him to recognize the creator that exist right before one's eyes.
God is much larger than any religion. JW, Islam, Judiaism, Shinto, Buhddism....yadayadayada....they all have aspects and characteristics that would be well incorporated into one's individual life.
Prayer for me, now that I'm out, is more important than when I was in.
There exist something, someone, some entity, life giving power source beyond the fabric of our humaness.
My being involved with the WTBTS will never be reason enough to discount my belief in God. The fact that he has allowed to me see behind and beyond the curtain of those at the helm of the WTBTS, only confirms for me that he must exist.
I was in enormous emotional and mental anguish before coming to the reality of what goes on in OZ, and now, I believe I've been given the gift of freedom, as I am so much more at peace with myself, maybe for the first time in my life. The energy that would twist my life in so many knots, is no more.
Glory to God.