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Posts tagged ‘to Strengthen’

The no one or nothing in the darkness

When we look at our life, sometimes it can make us depressive, having us feel the “emptiness“, the missing of like-minded people.

How many of us do not build upon many aspirations, hopes, dreams and expectations?

Our head tolls from the many questions we have going one ear in and one ear out. And every moment we try to look to the right or to the left it is like we are getting hit by a boxing glove.

Noticing it looks like we are alone with our faith in Jesus and the coming Kingdom, we sometimes feel abandoned. Though we should know God does not abandon us, like He did not abandon Jesus. But Jesus also had a moment to despair and was calling onto his heavenly Father crying unto HIm, why He had left him.

46 About the ninth hour, Jesus called out with a loud voice, saying: “Eʹli, Eʹli, laʹma sa·bach·thaʹni?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”+ (Matthew 27:46)

Like Jesus crying out from the wooden stake, we also have moments that we want to cry to God. Yes, it might happen to any believer that he or she questions God’s presence. It is understandable that we can have such moments that we have doubts about ourselves, about our faith, about God.

It is in such moments of doubt, in moments of fear and despair, that we are invited by our Creator and Sustainer to seek hope. He has given us His Word to give us daily food, to be able to go step by step and day by day. That Word of God we can take it up every moment of the day. It is God’s Love letter to us. From that great Book of books, we should be able to receive strength and hope. Hope comes from our trust that even when we don’t feel like God is present, God will show up for us. Often when we feel most abandoned, hurt and broken, we shall come to remember those moments as the ones where Jehovah God has shown up most powerfully for us. Those are the moments that shape our life and our faith.

Like Jehovah God had not forsaken Jesus, He shall not leave alone those who love Him.

28 For Jehovah loves justice, And he will not abandon his loyal ones.+ ע [Ayin]They will always be guarded;But the descendants of the wicked will be done away with.+ (Psalm 37:28)

Even when God might be with us, we can have that feeling to be just on our own with our faith, being surrounded by a majority who does not want to know about God or the Biblical Truth.

Constantly we seem to be confronted with an emptiness that draws us into the darkness. Sometimes it feels like we are a “no one”, or a “nothing”.
Without being someone and without having someone around us, we remain unfulfilled and incomplete. Our instinct wants us to mix with others. We are not made to be alone.

This primal instinct to be something is what drives our efforts towards avoiding being nothing.

The threat of which is the root to losing ourselves to the distraction of everything, when we lose hope of ever being something…to someone…but not just anyone. {Elusive peace…}

When we get older, this seems a bigger problem, than when we were young. Then comes a time when we want to scan our life and want to see what we established. How much effort we put in things and into what it resulted. What is clinging to our memory? What do we find worthwhile to remember?

Around us we see so many people who seem to be more successful than us. They can get a lot of listening ears, eager to hear their philosophies which give people only a shade of what they would love to see. Though we do know they can not offer that comfort or assurance that we love to offer people, because we live by our hope in Jesus Christ. Constantly we are confronted by those people who find that their way is the best way. But what they do not see is that what we want them to come to see: the way that seems right for so many men its end is the way of death.

12 There is a way that seems right to a man,+ But in the end it leads to death.+ (Proverbs 14:12)

We live in that world full of vanity, where man even thinks he can play for god and create whatever he wants.

20 For the creation was subjected to futility,+ not by its own will, but through the one who subjected it, on the basis of hope+ (Romans 8:20)

We would love to show those who think they can do it without God, that it is better to come under the wings of God. There is namely an alternative to the ultimate conclusion of doom and the futility of human philosophy.

23 For the wages sin pays is death,+ but the gift God gives is everlasting life+ by Christ Jesus our Lord.+ (Romans 6:23)

In this world, we do even have to struggle against those who say they are Christian but do not want to recognise who Jesus is and how important it is to I believe in him who God called His beloved son.

25 Jesus said to her: “I am the resurrection and the life.+ The one who exercises faith in me, even though he dies, will come to life; 26 and everyone who is living and exercises faith in me will never die at all.+ Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26)

Jesus said to him: “I am the way+ and the truth+ and the life.+ No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6)
Constantly we are confronted with those stubborn people who do not believe that Jesus existed, or who think that Jesus is God, instead of believing in the God of Jesus and accepting that Jesus is the way to God and not to himself.That unbelief makes us so sad, and when you stand there surrounded by so many unbelievers, it can feel so lonely, so dark in a world that offers so much but oh so little. Coming closer to the end times it worries us also so much, certainly when we see more lies encircling peoples heads. Fake news seems to have won the battle for attention.Though we should find the strength to continue calling people to come to follow the real Christ, the Jewish Nazarene Jeshua, the son of David and son of God. Continuing on our path to God, we should find comfort in the fact that there shall not be so many who shall believe in Jesus and do their best to stay on the right track, and that shall be able to enter the small gate to the Kingdom of God. We should see and follow that light in the world, which is given by God.

8 12 Then Jesus spoke again to them, saying: “I am the light of the world.+ Whoever follows me will by no means walk in darkness, but will possess the light+ of life.”  (John 8:12)

13 “Go in through the narrow gate,+ because broad is the gate and spacious is the road leading off into destruction, and many are going in through it; 14 whereas narrow is the gate and cramped the road leading off into life, and few are finding it.(Matthew 7:14-15)

We, when feeling down, should remember that the apostles and other first followers of Christ, also were just with a few who were not liked by the majority. They also had often to struggle. They also could find strength by knowing they could get to encounter many tribulations, but always would there be a way out, and the gate to God’s Kingdom, which would be much better than any kingdom here on earth.

22 There they strengthened the disciples,+ encouraging them to remain in the faith and saying: “We must enter into the Kingdom of God through many tribulations.”+ (Acts 14:22)

18 “And if the righteous man is being saved with difficulty, what will happen to the ungodly man and the sinner?”+ (1 Peter 4:18)

All those who believe that Jesus is the son of God and the way to life, let them strengthen each other. Let us all be conscious that the road leading off into destruction is a road taken by the majority. When not being part of that majority we should not worry so much, because we should know there is Someone Who wants to carry us over the swamps and deserts of this world.

Let us not get the sand of the desert in our eyes by the many false teachings which encircle this materialist world. Instead of being a little grain of sand let us stick together as a lump of earth and join hands as sowers of productive seed.

44 It is sown a physical body; it is raised up a spiritual body.+ If there is a physical body, there is also a spiritual one. (1 Corinthians 15:44)

Let our voice keep going through the air and into the darkness so that somewhere a person might see the little spark of light.

We always should be aware of the importance of our own free choice. We always shall have to come to decide which way to go, the broad way of the world or the small way of God.

The question comes down to who will I believe. Will I trust the world that can give no guarantees and an uncertain future?

Or will I trust the sent one from God who proved himself by paying for my sins on the stake, dying in my place, and then arose from the dead in victory just as he said he would (Matthew 17:23, 20:19, 28:5-6)?

He too felt at moments on his own. He, too, had to trust his God. He put his own will aside for doing the Will of his heavenly Father.

Are you prepared to put your own will aside to do the Will of God?

Are you willing to go into the desert, like Jesus did, to talk about God and to spread the Good News of the coming Kingdom of God?

When reading the Scriptures we shall become aware that Jehovah God is really the only One Whom we fully can trust. By the knowledge that He is trustworthy and faithful, we should get more trust in Him and allow HIm to take away our fear and sad, depressive mood. With Him in our heart, we shall not be disappointed.

To you they cried out, and they were saved; They trusted in you, and they were not disappointed.*(Psalm 22:5)

When feeling depressed or down because it looks like we can not reach people, let us  put on a spiritual kind of armour that comes only from God because we are engaged in a spiritual struggle rather than a physical one.

10 Finally, go on acquiring power+ in the Lord and in the mightiness of his strength. 11 Put on the complete suit of armor+ from God so that you may be able to stand firm against the crafty acts of the Devil;+ 12 because we have a struggle,+ not against blood and flesh, but against the governments, against the authorities, against the world rulers of this darkness, against the wicked spirit forces+ in the heavenly places.+ 13 For this reason take up the complete suit of armor from God,+ so that you may be able to resist* in the wicked day and, after you have accomplished everything, to stand firm. (Ephesians 6:10-13)

When we accept Jehovah’s help and rely on Him completely, we can succeed in opposing the adversaries of God. When we can have the same kind of confidence that the apostle Paul had. He wrote:

“If God is for us, who will be against us?” (Rom. 8:31)

So, let us step out of the darkness, stretch out our hands to those who also love Jesus and his God. Let us join forces and focus most of our attention on learning about Jehovah and serving Him.

 Cause me to walk in your truth and teach me,For you are my God of salvation. ו [Waw]

In you I hope all day long. ז [Zayin]

(Ps. 25:5)

+

Preceding

When feeling alone, afraid to connect with others in order to grow in faith

The Nazarene master teacher learning people how they should behave

As Christ’s slaves doing the Will of God in gratitude

++

Additional reading

  1. Lonely so lonely
  2. Fear, struggles, sadness, bad feelings and depression
  3. This was my reward
  4. Trouble in my brain
  5. Walking through the valley of the shadow of death
  6. A ruffled mind makes a restless pillow
  7. What loneliness is more lonely than distrust?
  8. In defence of Doubt
  9. A person is limited only by the thoughts that he chooses
  10. Life’s challenges may not paralyse you
  11. Faithfulness when most necessary
  12. He Becomes a Fool Through His Endless Desire
  13. Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement
  14. A Million Ways To Live: Al Muhyi (The One Who Gives Life)
  15. He who beams never walks in the dark
  16. Confidence
  17. Hope begins in the dark
  18. It is not try but trust
  19. Give your tears to God
  20. Crying and trusting ones do not get disappointed
  21. A Living Faith #1 Substance of things hoped for
  22. Jesus son of God or God the son
  23. The Prophets Inquire into and Testify About Salvation
  24. A new decade, To open the eyes to get a right view
  25. Gospel or Good News
  26. Good News Breakers
  27. Bringing Good News into the world
  28. Preaching of the Kingdom

+++

Related

  1. The Void In Us
  2. Lonely… Empty… Why ?
  3. “Empty”
  4. Emptiness
  5. Emptiness “The space in time experienced as Emptiness is the predicate for Inspiration.
  6. An emptiness inside of me
  7. Why have you abandoned me?
  8. Ache
  9. Do you think Loneliness and Emptiness are two same words?
  10. When I Get Lost in My Loneliness
  11. Treatments for Depression
  12. A Conversation with Lama Shenpen about Emptiness and the Heart Sutra
  13. Emptiness Versus Hope
  14. A Moment’s Worth of Peace

The Picture of the Governing Body

Crasizag is a blog that wants to document a family’s journey from what she calls a cult, but what we would consider more a denomination. It is namely very difficult to get in that congregation of believers but very easy to get out of the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

It seems she has not had “a bright and happy past” in that organisation, because she is now looking forward to a better “future”.

Is it Asiza (?) whose purpose is

to help people to think for themselves, so they have the freedom to make their own decisions and to give them the love and support they need while on their personal journey’s. To encourage, to strengthen and to inspire them to live their best lives.

that is something every person should do, believer and non-believer.

Lion - M.L KingThe birth of her baby boy changed her life and he taught her about real, unconditional love.

He was a scrap of humanity but in just existing he took my heart, expanded it and helped me understand completely that there can Only be unconditional love for your children. From that point on I knew that no matter what happened I would Always love him and I could never ‘cut him off’ just because of not believing what I believed. {For my son} (editorial note: the shouting with capitals has been removed and replaced with only one capital: by only & always)

In a way that brings us to “shunning of people their own children” which seems to happen by the Jehovah’s Witnesses and which is not only shameful and needs to stop, it is also an unchristian act. But we must know that shunning is being used more as a social control mechanism. Such social control mechanism are used most commonly in small tight-knit social groups to punish those who violate the most serious group rules.

When your child, no matter what age has done something wrong -surely that is when they need their parents the most, they do not need to be exiled and ignored! {For my son}

Whatever children may have done wrongly, even when it would be murder, parents always have to take care of them and should show them their love and protect them against those who could do them harm.

the writer of the above mentioned blog and of this guest-writing came to leave the Witnesses for good, whilst

a great deal revolved around the love for my son, and wanting a different life for him. {For my son}

she writes.

For her

A parents love should reflect how God loves us, not this conditional love that the Witnesses teach, but an all encompassing love and acceptance that cannot be denied.

Leaving has made it possible for our son to have a normal life. A life full of family, friends, joy, and new experiences, without the rules of the Witnesses isolating him from the world around him.

With her husband she writes her blog, where both share their experiences so that other’s can also see there is most certainly life after the Witnesses!

More life and more love than you can ever imagine.

we hope they found out, as well coming to the knowledge they still can keep to the same faith, loving Jehovah and giving their life to Him, instead of giving it to an organisation.

She writes

One of my reasons for leaving – I was dealing with my own memories of child abuse, and during that process I was increasingly sensitive to other’s stories. I read them and shared their pain, one of those stories was Candice Conti, another was the write up in the UK about Gordan Leister and the shocking behaviour of the elders in that case. These articles scratched open a lot of wounds, and forced small cracks into massive ones. I keep on researching paedophilia in the congregations and found the Silent Lambs website, I read Barbara Anderson’s story and Bill Bowen. Suddenly the reality was so ugly that it was hard to look at it, and it was one of the reasons why I had to leave the Witnesses. I could not in good conscience stay associated with them. My heart would not allow me. I could no longer say I was a witness without cringing inside. I felt dirty, degraded and a liar. To rectify that I left, with my head high. Yes, it was scary – the Witness lifestyle was literally all I knew, but having a clear conscience and knowing my young son would be safer out of their clutches gave me strength, and still does to this day. My love for my son is another huge reason I left, but that I will leave for another post.

Lippincott doriangray.jpgComparing the Governing Body of the Jehovah’s Witnesses to the moral fantasy novel “The Picture of Dorian Gray” by Oscar Wilde has been bouncing around her head for some time. She writes

It occurred to her that

if we were to find those metaphorical portraits of the Governing Body our eyes would scorched by the vile filth there portrayed.

She asks us to imagine the portraits of the Governing Body members, the so called faithful and discreet slave

They have been complicit in death, sexual abuse, in fact every abuse we know of, lies, hypocrisy, shame, fearmongering, guilt inducing their members, controlling their members very lives. Why? All to maintain their power, their money, their empire.

When she looks at the JW and their organisation she writes

To understand a bit better why jw’s think as they do about those that leave, think of it this way. Instead of using the words, disfellowshipped, excommunicated – use the words treason and traitor. No matter what your reasons are for leaving, no matter how justified, no matter how reasonable, those that leave are traitors to them . Being a traitor they can call you whatever they like, they can think you the lowest of the low, simply because you decided you no longer wanted to be part of their delusion. {The usual thing with diaries}

She and her husband both waked up at the same time and by doing so they were lucky to have a real support to eachother,

though it doesn’t always work out that way. If one of you has already woken up and the other is still in deep – well that is where some real mental gymnastics find their true calling. {Taking off the ‘blinders’}

We can imagine that many have problems by accepting that the Governing Body are not God’s spokesmen, because they have been told so for many, many years, and never have seem questioned it thoroughly.

Craig explains from here:

“Trying to reason with someone with blinders on is like bashing your head against a brick wall. They cannot see the fact that they cannot see. One of things that I always loved about my wife was her intelligence, but when it came to the Jehovah’s Witnesses she refused to use it.

… The Witnesses see everything good is for Jehovah, and evil is not for Jehovah, the real world you have to learn to live for yourself and think for yourself. Being honest was not encouraged by the jws. If you were honest you would have to question their decisions, because even God says in the Bible, ‘test me’, the jws say ‘obey me blindly’. I could never accept that.

Trying to open her mind was exceptionally difficult, eventually I had to back off and just lay some seeds so that she would think for herself and trust her own intelligence would prove true. When she did finally wake I was there to support her. Eventually that is what happened, but it wasn’t me that done it, it was the birth of our son. I was full of hate for what they were doing to my wife, but never for my wife! It was sad, the woman I loved was being completely subverted by bullshit that didn’t care about her.” {Taking off the ‘blinders’}

For them they came to see that

If you strip away the ‘spiritual aspect’ of the Witnesses all you have is a corporate pyramid scheme. As long as you don’t scratch the surface  – ask too many questions, their product looks amazing, but under examination its full of holes, it doesn’t make sense, and like a virus its designed to take control of your thinking and tear you away from normal society, to hammer you into another drone to join the ranks of the other drones who have done the same. {How important is that JW image? Part 1}

The writer also came to question

What is the most prevalent news item regarding the Witnesses now? Child abuse. Why can’t they simply acknowledge they have a serious problem? Even the Catholic Church have acknowledged their guilt and are working with the authorities. Why can’t they just change the disgusting two-witness rule? Adhere strictly to reporting to the authorities and letting the professionals take over? I think that it all comes down to their hard maintained squeaky clean image. They will deny, lie and otherwise ‘spin’ whatever they have to because their corporate perfect image is the most important thing to them. Sadly, even death, torture, rape and thousands of molestation cases cannot out weigh the importance of maintaining that image. {How important is that JW image? Part 2}

richard-m-nixon-quote-dont-try-to-take-on-a-new-personality-it-doesnt[1]and she came to see where there is a big danger in the organisation’s focus or saying

Well there it is, anything that comes from the publications and the platform or personal counsel from elders means you have to listen to it and apply it, doing otherwise means you are NOT a full grown Christian and are DISLOYAL. {New personality or cult identity?}

It is that fear of being disloyal that may make many not dare to question.

+

Preceding articles

A Society pleading poverty

Male domination and tyranny giving opportunities to defile the Name of God

Belonging to or being judged by

Why do Jehovah’s Witnesses preach?

Oklahoma City Regional Convention of Jehovah’s Witnesses

Random Observations From My Most Recent JW Convention Experience

You Are The Truth

Jehovah’s Witnesses Circuit Assembly and a Pillar to freedom

Jesus’ footstep followers, irrespective of sectarian lines

Authority from the One God to one mediator between God and men

++

Additional reading

  1. A visible organisation on earth
  2. Inculturation today calling for a different attitude
  3. Jehovah Witnessess Making sure all records relating to child molestation are in harmony
  4. Jehovah’s Witnesses Shunning ex-members adverse effects on family relationships
  5. Parenthood made more difficult
  6. Growing rift between observant parents and their children
  7. “Prayer 2” – Child Abuse
  8. Not an easy decision to make
  9. Pope Benedict will hide
  10. Last day of Ratzinger as Pope Benedict XVI
  11. Responsibility for children who were molested by clergy
  12. Catholic church asking for forgiveness and promising to take action against child-abusers
  13. Remember there’s a light in the next day
  14. Joy: Foundation for a Positive Life

+++

Further reading

  1. As I walked out one summer’s morning
  2. Having Fun at Jehovah’s Witness Convention
  3. Pedophilia amongst the Jehovah’s Witnesses
  4. Jehovah’s witnesses pedophile policy
  5. The Watchtower Punished: Society loses legal battle over child abuse case
  6. “We will decide who is a predator!” – New Watchtower Instructions to Elders on Child Abuse
  7. Jehovah’s Witnesses Child Molestation Victims seek justice
  8. Barbara Anderson’s Anecdotes
  9. Why Watchtower shut down JWsurvey.org for over 24 hours
  10. The Girl Who Took On The Watchtower – Candace Conti Speaks Out
  11. In their own words: Candace Conti and Rick Simons speak out in their 2013 interview videos
  12. Watchtower files reply brief as Conti appeal continues
  13. Kathleen Conti breaks down during emotional SNAP presentation
  14. Kathleen Conti supports new bill for victims of child abuse
  15. Candace Conti speaks out at RNA 2013 conference
  16. Resiliency
  17. If child abuse were a disease, we’d see urgent action. Our culture must change : Guardian.
  18. Chicago Non-Profit Seeking To Prevent Child Abuse And Neglect
  19. The Goddard Inquiry is not the answer to survivors pain
  20. Empty Chairs: Much more than a story of Child Abuse. Excerpt here.
  21. New Zealand judge who headed an independent inquiry into child sexual abuse in Britain has quit
  22. Housemaid saga: Questions for Madam
  23. Did God make her leave?
  24. Jehovah’s Witnesses Instructed to Brutally Kick Their Own Children Out of the Family If They Disobey the Religion
  25. The Shunning
  26. The Watchtower Steps Up Their Demands to Shun, Even Family
  27. The Loaded Language of the Watchtower – Part 1 … Shocking Where We’ve Heard This Before
  28. The Loaded Language of Watchtower – Part 2 … How Words Became an Easy Means to Scapegoat Runaway Slaves
  29. Shunning amidst a crisis
  30. Jehovah’s Witness Shunning Video Depicts Torture as Acceptable
  31. In Shocking Public Discourse, Jehovah’s Witnesses Are Told to Shun Inactive Members, Even Parents!
  32. Bigmouth Strikes Again
  33. When Leaving Religion Costs You Everything…
  34. The Truth About the Watchtower Judicial Committee Process, as Told By a Former Elder
  35. Cult or Not a Cult?
  36. Finding the Way
  37. An Audacious Proposal
  38. Review of talk at “Remain loyal to Jehovah” 2016 convention of Jehovahs Witnesses
  39. Behavior Modification Is Alive And Well In The Scientology Conflict – Horrifyingly So
  40. Them and Us Mentality
  41. community
  42. Is The Church Really Clueless?

+++

We Chose Freedom

This idea of comparing the Governing Body to the book “The Picture of Dorian Gray” by Oscar Wilde has been bouncing around in my head for some time. It occurred to me that if we were to find those metaphorical portraits of the Governing Body our eyes would scorched by the vile filth there portrayed.

If you are not familiar with this book, here is the plot from Wikipedia:

—Dorian Gray is the subject of a full-length portrait in oil by Basil Hallward, an artist who is impressed and infatuated by Dorian’s beauty; he believes that Dorian’s beauty is responsible for the new mode in his art as a painter. Through Basil, Dorian meets Lord Henry Wotton, and he soon is enthralled by the aristocrat’s hedonistic worldview: that beauty and sensual fulfilment are the only things worth pursuing in life.

Newly understanding that his beauty will fade, Dorian expresses…

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