I was studying with Jehovah..s Witnesses during my college years. I found that they somehow was able to make me understand many of the meanings from the bible that I had never understood before. I had a clearer sight of what it was to walk as a Christian. I became very zealous for doing things that the bible instructed me to do and preaching this good news of God..s Kingdom to everyone I came into contact with. How joyful I was to tell others about the wonderful things that were in store for them after all of the wickedness was taken away. I met many people who listened and wanted to learn more and some who were a bit skeptical, while some were very belligerent and did not want anything to do with God. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ Fast forward several years and I was working my life into something that I would be able to say that I had a clean conscience before my God. I married a wonderful girl who was exactly what I had prayed for. Someone who came from the same background as I did and was not ..raised in the truth.. as the saying goes for those children who were raised as JW..s. Because my father traveled frequently during my childhood years, I was sent to any church that would come and pick us up, or to my parents, take us away for a few hours every Sunday. I went to some very interesting churches and learned some about people and a little bit about God. It was usually the same principles taught just about everywhere I went. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ Well times goes by and we have two beautiful children. I am blessed by my God and continue to do the things that I was taught. The internet is a funny thing. It can open your eyes to some intriguing thoughts or mislead you into some wayward path. Discretion and testing must be used for everything that comes off of the net. Well, it appears that many people have done some digging into the past and not so distant past of that organization’s leadership which I claim to be a part of. Some of the findings showed that the leadership acted in a way that betrayed their teachings. Like when someone says, “Do as I say, not as I do.” This was a bit disheartening. I was taught to accept all things taught as the Truth, without questions, for fear of being disfellowshiped. And yet the bible teaches us to test out everything to see whether or not it comes from God. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ A quandary is now present everywhere I turn. Being at the meetings, I know and believe in my heart that I go to learn about God and worship Him and Praise Him with songs and prayers. But I also know that those who are in a leadership position have done things that they have not acknowledged, nor even apologized for. Instead, they have dismissed it as being insignificant. I am having trouble coming to terms with that. Somehow I know that things like this have happened to God’s chosen people of the past and I reason, why should today be any different. The Jehovah’s Witnesses claim to have the “Truth” and I believe that they are the closest to it than others that I have studied. But yet, I know that these are just sinful men who do make mistakes and God will deal with them on his timescale. Why should today’s governing body be any different from the high priests of the ancient Israelites who sinned against God and were punished in due time. I keep telling myself that and that I should be patient but continue my worship. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ I have made mistakes and I was taught that I should go before the elders and lay my sins so that the older men who were spiritually wise would pray for me on my behalf as they would have a better standing before Jehovah. I also thought that if anyone should sin, they too should do the same thing. However, it appears that some think or feel that they are above the Law. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ Reading through the bible I learned that just because a King was evil did not mean that all of the inhabitants of that kingdom were evil, many still clung to what was good and kept doing good in God’s Eyes. And the opposite was true, if there was a good King, not everyone was practicing ‘good’. So as today when people in the leadership positions of the Jehovah’s Witnesses do sin against God, it does not mean that the entire believers are also doing what is bad. It means that some were drawn out and tempted, but not beyond what they could endure, and failed the test. Jehovah is a loving God who wants people to forget their sinful ways and do what is ‘good’. It’s just that now, I am very carefully testing everything I read and am taught to ensure that it does follow God’s word and does not go against it. I keep in close contact with Jehovah through prayer through Jesus for help in understanding what I hear, read and see. I also pray for patience regarding these bad things and for protection from them for me and my family. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ Well, it is now December and I am learning more and more about an organization that claims to be the one true religion, so does every other religion, but has a few skeletons in the closet, so does every other religion. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ Reading through the post of other witnesses and non-witnesses, I have learned things that the WTBTS does not want its members to find out and in order to protect themselves from losing membership, they are publishing information that is meant to direct its members from finding out such truths by characterizing the internet as an unwise decision to go roaming about. But I do remember Jesus saying to his disciples to do as they say but not as they do for they were put into place by God. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ In my opinion, I see much benefit in most of their teachings. It does come from the bible and it is good for us as a protection. It’s sad that they don’t act the same way or walk in their own footsteps. It makes it a little difficult to do what is right when I have to keep verifying that what is spoken is true according to the bible. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ My family does not attend the meetings now, but we are still very strong with our beliefs. My wife instills our values onto our children to help them understand what the truth is. We choose not to “protect” them with “white” lies but instead tell the truth in a way that their young minds can understand and apply in their lives. I do pray everyday that we are doing what is right and ask God Jehovah for help in doing so. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ I do keep in contact with my friends who are still very strong in meeting attendance but I don’t divulge to them that I have stopped going. I would rather not stumble them with my personal choices if I am wrong. I sometimes pray for a small sign like in the Old Testament to show the WTBTS and its members how they need to change, and then I think, “Who am I to ask for such things.” It’s humbling when I sit and imagine the enormous power that God and his Son has and how little and insignificant we really are. I mean, they do not need us, but they made us and I would like to think that means something to them that God would allow his own Son to die for us. I feel like, “whoa” that is amazing! _____________________________________________________________________________________________ My dad has been getting into the bible now and he has lots of questions and lots of his own reasoning. When my dad gets stuck on an idea, he is very strong minded about it. It would take a mini-miracle for him to change his mind once it is set. So I find it a joy and challenge to discuss bible based doctrines and prophecies an how those are different from what some religions are saying. Maybe God is using him to sharpen me or vice versa. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ There is so much in the bible to read and understand and I hope to get to much of it before it’s my time or the end. I would feel bad if I did not have enough time to get a better idea of the bible than I do now. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ I can hardly believe that it has been over six months since I last posted here. So sorry to keep anyone waiting, if anyone really is reading my blog. Oh well, back to life. I have been doing so much research on the history and teachings of Jehovah..s Witnesses that my mind needed a few weeks, if not months to organize and make sense of all the information I was putting into my brain. Something that I did to help me was to drive over 2100 miles and relocate to another part of the country. The drive was a bit hard with two small children, but it gave me much time to reflect on what I was finding out about ..The Truth... I could go into details about how the WatchTower Bible and Tract Society has changed their minds on so many doctrines and other nit picking, but I..m sure you can just Google it for yourselves. I have also heard so many people say to my own ears, ..We know that there are some people in Jehovah..s Earthly Organization that make mistakes, but it doesn..t mean that the Organization is wrong... I walk away a bit sad knowing that some people can..t see the forest for the trees. I wonder how they rationalize a few wrongdoings by certain men in high positions of authority as imperfect weakness and sin and yet still cling to their teachings. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ Well, the foundation of this religious group doesn..t reflect what it started out as. It tends to morph itself according to the knowledge of the people who are among the congregations. My wife has been more receptive to the things I bring up about the rules and regulations of this organization. Reading through more information and about the circuit assemblies and district conventions, I find more instances of a man centered organization that is replacing Jesus as the mediator between GOD and men. So many wordings have been changed to slowly train the minds of the congregation that the organization is the mouthpiece of GOD and Jesus is a sidekick. My children are at the mercy of these so called righteous men who have the authority to shut us out of the congregation if we do not follow every letter of the rules they put forth. Jesus once told his audience that they should listen to the Pharisee..s as their teaching would be beneficial to learning about GOD and his kingdom, but not to do what the Pharisees did as they were hypocrites. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ Mat 23:1 Then Jesus spoke to the crowd and to His disciples,_________________________________ Mat 23:2 saying, The scribes and the Pharisees have sat down on Moses.. seat.________________ Mat 23:3 Then all things, whatever they tell you to keep, keep and do. But do not do according to their works, for they say, and do not do.____________________________________________________ Mat 23:4 For they bind heavy and hard to bear burdens, and lay them on the shoulders of men, but they do not desire to move them with their finger. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ I wonder how I can even follow the teachings of these men if they have been changed that they hardly resemble anything coming from GOD..s laws. When I read the magazines WatchTower and Awake, I find more and more rules and regulations that the Governing Body of men continue to place onto the congregation. The Kingdom News and the Kingdom Ministry have more details about rules and regulations concerning many aspects of life in general and specifics. Jesus said that the entire Law is summed up in two commands, _____________________________________________________________________________________________ Mat 22:37 And Jesus said to him, ..You shall love Jehovah your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind..._________________________________________________________ Mat 22:38 This is the first and great commandment.___________________________________________ Mat 22:39 And the second is like it: ..You shall love your neighbor as yourself..._________________ Mat 22:40 On these two commandments all the Law and the Prophets hang. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ Many teachings of this religious group are now coming under more scrutiny. And several main doctrines have been disproved both by secular and biblical evidence. I have to ask myself, who is this that I am going in after? Am I really doing what Jesus has asked of me? Am I walking on the path of Righteousness? I have many doubts now if this group is really acting on Jesus and Jehovah..s behalf for His people here on earth. Jesus asked us to take up his yoke, for he does not weigh us down with minor rules and regulations that we as imperfect and sinful humans cannot ascribe to. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ Mat 11:28 Come to Me, all those laboring and being burdened, and I will give you rest.__________ Mat 11:29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, because I am meek and lowly in heart, ..and you will find rest to your souls..._______________________________________________________ Mat 11:30 For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ He gave us some guidelines but his forgiveness is great as long as our hearts are in the right place. He said that he will never allow the righteous one to totter. He will be there to strengthen them and bless them. So while I continue to learn about this religious group, I have to be honest to myself that I cannot follow them any longer. I have to question everything that they taught and determine if it really does come from the bible and if it has been taken out of context. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ My dad and I continue to talk about religious things and sometimes he takes a wild course on some news, but for the most part, we are coming to some agreements about Jesus and His Father, Jehovah. I have begun to read more of the bible and filter it so that my oldest daughter can get a better understanding on what Jesus taught and how she can mold her life into what Jesus and Jehovah would be proud of. My wife has started to distance herself from a few of the teachings but has further to go than I do and only time and a slow releasing of the information will help her to fully understand what kind of organization she was a part of. I continue to pray during our family meals with my wife and children and continue to keep the teachings of Jesus and Jehovah a big part of our family life. For now it seems, that our family will strengthen itself with prayer and learning while we figure out where we can be a part of congregation that really does have GOD..s blessing. Sometimes I think there won..t be a perfect fit but if I can find one of the seven churches that Jesus spoke to and about in Revelation chapters two and three, that would be a good start. As what I gather is that they are all loved by Him, if not, he wouldn..t take the time to mention them or care. Jesus does offer some kind words to build them up but also offers some critical words to help the churches to correct their ways and make themselves right in His eyes. _____________________________________________________________________________________________ Until next time, keep the faith of Jesus and Jehovah and keep praying, it is our only means of personal contact with our God and Mediator. May God have mercy on you and your family and may he continue to bless you. ..truth.ceeker.. _____________________________________________________________________________________________