This is a transcript of a google chat I had with a friend from a year or so ago. I was doing my emails and he popped up this chat window and so we started chatting. That had never happened to me before but of course I knew the brother. I had sorta forgotten about it, but thought that we all might learn something from it.
Some small edits have been made for anonymity purposes, i.e., his name is not “Ben”. Also I made a few places bold where the conversation gets interesting. He admits a lot…and reveals what most if not all of JWs experience at some point in time.
.————— CHAT SESSION 2010 BEN ———————— ———————————————————————–
Ben: staying dry?
Sent at 8:22 AM on Wednesday
Ben: hows it going?
me: Lately so worn out just getting things done, but isn’t that how we all r
Ben: True. Im fighting a horrible chest cough. .. plus working.. .chasing the little one… and theo stuff.
me: that sucks
Ben: are you at work?
me: Yeah actually. Was writing a “to do” list. I have to work an event this Friday off-site have to submit a list of equipment, blah blah blah. What theo stuff?
You know… God.
me: That’s his name lol.
Nothing in particular… just the run of the mill, meetings, service, family worship… sometimes gets exhuasting.
me: Yeah. Our family has a demo on the assembly. We are going to be a “model” family finishing up family worship, boy we have them fooled lol.
Ben: ooooooh. Please have someone take pictures… blow them up to 8×10 glossys, sign and send them. 😉
Thats cool tho. Our family did that years ago.
I’ve since proved the model family thing wasn’t working. hahaha!
me: I wonder if i could ask u something…kind of serious… Ben: suuuure. shoot.
Sent at 8:32 AM on Wednesday
me: Awhile back had a bro I’ve been friends w for a long time get DFed. He started emailing me all these links and I responded twice trying to defend truth but he asked to “examine all things” (scrip in Corinthians i think) and I did read a few of the pages
Sent at 8:35 AM on Wednesday
me: we’ve all come across that stuff before, like when you read an news article about the blood issue and then there’s all these haters that post cr@p. I’ve never read any of that junk but he made a point with me
me: just wondered if that ever happened to you
Ben: Man……I went thru a really tough time a few years ago. Doubts.
I grew up in the truth. Never knew anything else… other than the truth is the truth… dont question it.
We are told to examine all things like you mentioned…but there is fine line there.
me: yeah. Here’s the verse he sent me:
(1 Corinthians 2:14-15) . . .But a physical man does not receive the things of the spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot get to know [them], because they are examined spiritually. 15 However, the spiritual man examines indeed all things, but he himself is not examined by any man.
Ben: We arent to read any literature that negatively protrays us…Yes. Good scripture.
I have seen many of my looooong time friends leave the truth. Doubting.
Recently, I had a long long long time friend (since I was 16) leave. He was an elder twice in his time.
We were servants together. Married within a few years. Had our kids close.
Then he leaves. It makes you wonder.
me: Wow. that’s tough. I don’t have any doubts. I love Jehovah, the Bible. But what
Ben: I love Jehovah too… and the bible. Its not about doubting those.
And… its hard to explain unless you’ve been there. If you haven’t you would never understand.
Sent at 8:41 AM on Wednesday
Ben: But… its taken me a long time to realize that regardless of how many people leave Jehovah. JWs have the closest thing to what the bible says should be happening. Others leave… and go NO WHERE. They are lost. They have no organization. No future hope. They are lost as any other religion.
So… I dont know if I am really answering your question….
but… it seems like your friend is subtly planting doubts.
And… they are destructive like the slave says. But… sometimes inevitable.
Inescapable is probably a better word.
me: Well I blocked him after that so that was it. It’s just hard to talk about it because you never know if someone is going to “tell on you” and I don’t want him to get in any more trouble he has since been reinstated
Ben: Oh. Why? Cuz he contacted you… or because he had these feelings?
me: all of the above. I was an elder for a long time you can’t even believe the things pubs will come and tattle to you lol. It kinda came up w my wife a few months ago i’ll tell u why if u want
Ben: sure. Question first tho. Did you and your wife grow up in the truth?
me: yes and yes
Ben: ok shoot.
Sent at 8:47 AM on Wednesday
Ben: And I know publishers come up with all kinds of crap to just “tattle”. I mean. Seriously. Aren’t we all suppose to be on the same page. All with the same goals. We have have troubles tho. Hurdles to overcome. Why are some soooo H-bent on causing trouble?
me: tell me about it
Ben: My dad used to be PO. So.. .I know the trouble ones can cause. Plus with i was an MS there were ones that just had nothing better to do than pick. AND THESE WERE ELDERS!!!!
Dude… I got in trouble for seeing Paul McCartney and Billy Joel.
An elder gave a talk about SEX, DRUGS and CONCERTS were bad.
me: that’s sad because it is exerting a personal opinion over someone else- that’s what the Pharisees did thats not scripturtal
Ben: Yeah. Dude… it went on for yeeeeeeaaaaaarrrrrrrrs.
We were known as the congregation that couldnt see concerts.
We had to go underground to see anything.
Anyway… way off the subject. What was up with you?
me: oh yeah- So our anniversary is coming up. She had the idea that we coul’d get remarried. I said “sure that sounds like fun! I’d marry u again in a hearbeat!” So then I rememberd there was an article in the WT that said we don’t get re-married. I told her about it and she looked it up. Then was all crestfallen. I read the paragraph and it was weird. Hold on lemme find the quote I have WT Lib running…
* w06 10/15 pp. 19-20 par. 8 Weddings That Are Honorable in the Sight of God and Man *
When two Christians marry in a way that is legal and recognized, that union is binding in God’s eyes. Hence, Jehovah’s Witnesses do not repeat a marriage by having multiple legal ceremonies, nor do they renew marriage vows, such as on a couple’s 25th or 50th wedding anniversary. (Matthew 5:37)
Ben: Crestfallen… good word.
Sent at 8:53 AM on Wednesday
me: So it says basically “we don’t do that”. But the scrip ref is “let your yes mean yes, your no, no” and I read the context of Jesus’ words and the whole section is about STICKING TO YOUR WIFE and not divorcing her. That’s when I made a connection between that bros email and this
Ben: Doesnt really say you can’t…
me: If we did, I can guarnatee we’d be in the back room when someonee found out.
Ben: yeah. I mean… it more or less would have just been for fun. Right?
Sent at 8:55 AM on Wednesday
me: So the point I guess is, do we do something because the scripturtes tell us, or because the WT tells us? This was what the brother emailed me and he had a point. I asked a few friends, including an elder i’m close to and they all said oh just go do it privately
Ben: Dude… I AM SO UNDERSTANDING OF WHAT YOU JUST SAID.
I could tell you stories.
But… I wont. Not upbuilding.
me: thank you bro i appreciate that a lot. I hate being negative it is not my nature.
Ben: But… my friend basically left the truth because of that thought.
Do we follow the scriptures… or the slave’s advice. Not always the same thing. …but many view it that way. Thats when it gets hard.
me: it’s like when Morpheous tells Neo that he always knew something was out of place but he couldnt see or define what it was
Ben: oh man. yes. We are on the same page.
You know… tho….
I will tell you…
This thinking had led me to my dark period.
I just had to accept… if I believe this is the “club” Jehovah wants me to be in, I have to accept what the “clubs” rules are.
or… I do it privately.
(as long as its not immoral or illigal I have to add. )
me: makes sense. do what privately?
Ben: just whatever… like you said the brother said, go off and do it privately.
If its not against the scriptures… but it could “stumble” someone (i hate the word stumble… because its so wrongly applied)….
… do it privately.
me: i get it.
Ben: but… thats a tough place to be in sometimes.
Sent at 9:03 AM on Wednesday
Ben: Sometimes even though I would feel liberated doing something that I wouldnt brag about (r-rated movie, say for instance)… I would feel ok watching… i would in the back of my head feel guilty. Quite the wrestling.at times.
(link not intended)
Sent at 9:04 AM on Wednesday
me: Yeah lol my wife and i watched Slumdog Millionairre awhile back. Awesome movie had like one Fbomb that was it, but R. It was not a big deal I wish there wasnt so many people making extra rules
Ben: I totally argee dude. Aw man. I love that movie. There really should be a rating like the PG-17 rating for some movies.
me: VERY good point lets write the Academy
Ben: They talked about it a while ago.
me: I told that men are more immune to that word- have heard it 2 billion times in HS, at work, etc.
Ben: PG-17 or 18 … cant remember the actual rating.
me: i told her
Ben: I hear sometimes WORSE stuff than I have ever heard in a movie.
me: get some new frineds, lol
Ben: But….hahaha. right. Anyways… I understand dude.
me: Thanks. Maybe we can talk about it some more sometime. Gotta do some WORK ugggh see you later
Ben: ok talk to you later.