On Friday, our family said goodbye to my nearly 95 year old (non-JW) Aunt Josie. She would have been 95 today. She was a sweet woman, but she didn’t want to have anything to do with studying with JWs and least of all, becoming a JW. Yet she remained loving and cordial to family members who joined the JWs and still loved them no matter what. She was a godmother to one of my cousins who became JW as a teen and she still treated my cousin as her goddaughter and was always very loving and kind to her. So at the funeral on Friday, there were four (4) JWs who came to her funeral. That one cousin who had been the goddaughter was there with her husband, and another one of my cousins who brought his adult son.
I used to have a sense of dread when I knew I would see JW family whom I knew would make an issue of shunning me. It used to make me very upset and I used to feel horrible when they were around. I’m not sure what it was that bothered me so much. I guess I just felt so hurt by it all that even after all these years as it’s been 38 years since I left this cult now…it’s hard to believe that they continue to shun, no matter what kind of good and moral life I’m leading. Just the fact that I don’t want to ever be a JW ever again and have a support group that helps other former JWs makes me guilty in their eyes of immorality, loose conduct, apostasy, etc.….you name it.
I no longer feel that sense of dread anymore. It’s just all gone and all I feel now is a sense of sorrow for them. I am very happy and I have nothing but a sense of joy that is brought on by really learning to rely on the Holy Spirit. They don’t bother me, no matter how much they pretend I’m invisible or scowl at me. I just smile at them and say “hello” when I’m near them. They can’t take my joy, none of them! I hope they could sense my joy and happiness in me. Nothing---nothing that they can do, whether it be shunning, or showing distaste on their faces because I’m around, can steal my joy. My joy is fully in Jesus Christ and what He did for me. He has gifted me with the Holy Spirit and spiritual gifts that they can never understand if they stay in the Watchtower organization. They are slaves, subject to the whims of their leaders. They are filled with hate and disgust when they see a former member which is aggravated by what this organization teaches them to believe about former members. As far as they are concerned, we are all “mentally diseased” to them and they are the ones who are filled with fear and all kinds of phobias. See https://wol.jw.org/en/wol/d/r1/lp-e/2011524 The Watchtower has filled them with fear, hatred, anger, and they are devoid of love for anyone who dares walk away from their organization.
As far as I’m concerned now, I hold to what the Apostle Paul told Timothy:
“For God did not give us the Spirit of fear but of power and love and self-control. So do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord or of me, a prisoner for his sake, but by God’s power accept your share of suffering for the gospel. He is the one who saved us and called us with a holy calling, not based on our works, but on his own purpose and grace, granted to us in Christ Jesus before time began, but now made visible through the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus. He has broken the power of death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel! For this gospel I was appointed preacher and apostle and teacher. Because of this, in fact, I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, because I know the one in whom my faith is set and I am convinced that he is able to protect what has been entrusted to me until that day. Hold to the standard of sound words that you heard from me and do so with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. Protect that good thing entrusted to you, through the Holy Spirit who lives within us.” (2 Timothy 1:7-14 NET)
I regularly pray for my JW family, no matter how they treat me or how they behave around me. They are the ones who are horribly deceived, they just do not know it and the enemy has filled them with a self-righteous pride. They are prevented from investigating whether or not I have good reasons for leaving the Watchtower and becoming an Evangelical Christian who believes in the Trinity. To them, I’m just a mentally diseased pagan to be avoided and shunned forever. But it doesn’t matter what they think. It matters what God thinks and what His will is for my life. It matters that for 36 years I have a relationship with the real Jesus Christ, not the false Jesus of the Watchtower who is merely a created being and exalted angel. He is of the same nature and substance of the Father and even claimed to be the “I AM” in John 8:58. In another blogpost coming I will be writing about why I believe in the Trinity.
This was my Aunt Josie. I will always remember how she loved everyone, no matter what. I imagine she can celebrate her life and birthday in heaven now. I look forward to seeing her again.