to the Loving Arms of My Heavenly Father
Hello all! My name is Martha, and I was born and raised as a Jehovah’s Witness. When I was five, I stood up for Jesus to my entire kindergarten class and to my teacher. You see, they started singing the song “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands,” and I refused to sing, choosing instead to sit in the back with my arms crossed against my chest and crying.
After the song, my teacher asked me why I was crying. I told her, shakily but firmly, that the whole world was in the hands of Satan the Devil, and I was not going to sing about Satan.
Now, even though my belief was misguided, I believed it with all my heart and I loved Jehovah God with my whole heart. I truly believe that I had already been chosen by God as one of His children because He knew where my heart was—with Him. This defiance was an act of my faith and love for Him.
My life as a Jehovah’s Witness was rocky at best. My father was disfellowshipped, followed by my brother shortly thereafter. Our home immediately became divided; we were told to no longer honor our father.
His relationship with my older brothers became violent. Sometimes the police were called by neighbors. My second oldest brother’s life was sacrificed to the Watchtower when he was 19 because of the no blood policy enforced by that organization.
Because of all the hurt and confusion caused by these things, by the time I turned 18 my love for God had been replaced by contempt for Him and His Earthly Theocratic Organization, that is the Watchtower Bible & Tract Society, the Jehovah’s Witnesses. To me, God and His organization were the same entity, because that is how they are represented to all Jehovah’s Witnesses.
When I started driving and working at 16, I started flirting with the world. When I turned 18 I dove head first into the world of sin, leaving all the hurt and confusion behind, or so I thought. I became the prodigal daughter (The Parable of the Prodigal Son, Luke 15:11-32), and I asked for my inheritance up front, so I could enjoy what life I had.
I knew I was going to be destroyed at Armageddon, so I did my best to live as much of what the world had to offer as quickly as possible, for the End was just around the corner. After all, 1975 had already come and gone, and the world was in such a mess and so full of wickedness and evil it couldn’t be much longer.
Like the prodigal son, I indulged all my fleshly desires and became completely inundated with sin. There was nothing I wouldn’t try to find instant gratification. Drugs, sex, gluttony, lust, and without love for anyone, even my young children. God allowed me to go, and by all appearances I was forever lost. You see, I decided that I might as well spend my life laughing with the sinners, because I was no saint!
But, I did a lot of crying behind closed doors, and crying out to God, asking Him for help. He never once failed to respond to my cries, even though I only know this now from retrospect.
This lifestyle carried on throughout my whole life. I reaped much sorrow and misery from the choices I made. I was considered immoral and worldly even by the world’s standards. But, unbeknownst to me, God’s love followed me everywhere I went anyway. After all, I believe He had chosen me before the foundation of the world. I was His child, and even though I showed no appreciation for it, He continued to love me.
Many times, God provided a door for me that would lead to Him, but I would just walk past it, preferring instead to stay in the darkness of the Watchtower Society and of the world. I remained in that darkness, wandering aimlessly through the pain and confusion for 35 long years.
In my early 50s I became physically disabled, began attending college online, and I learned how to use the Internet for research. Up until that time I had stayed away from the Internet because every time I would go there I would get lost and confused, apparently a perpetual state of mind for me.
One day, the pain became too great to bear. My mother came to me crying because one of her Jehovah’s Witness children had disappointed her yet again, and had placed a financial burden on her. After comforting her the best I could, I went and googled ex-Jehovah’s Witnesses.
There at the top was the website 4Jehovah. Aha! I thought. Just what I need, because, you see, I still loved Jehovah God, even though by this time I hated what I believed to be His Earthly Theocratic Organization. Talk about feeling conflicted! But the door that was presented to me this time I opened with the click of my mouse, and I stepped out of the shadows of the Watchtower Organization and the world, and into the glorious light of Jesus Christ and finally came home.
I knew I was no longer worthy of being His child, and I asked only to be allowed into His home as a slave because the world had left me starving! But He refused to let me be a slave, and He opened His arms and let me run into them as His child once again. He brought out only the best for me when I came back to Him, and the rejoicing in heaven that day was greater even than the rejoicing at my being chosen by God as His child half a century before, and I humbly and joyfully joined the celebration.
If you also are wandering lost and unfulfilled in a spiritual desert, cast out into the world of wolves in sheep’s clothing (Matthew 7:15) and abandoned by your friends and family, believe me when I say there is an option available to you other than the Watchtower Organization or the world, you can go Home to your Father and He will welcome you with open arms and the love that only He can offer. You won’t find it anywhere but with Him.
There is nothing in this world that His love cannot overcome. The reward of doing so is greater than you can imagine. It is true for me, the worst of sinners, and it can be true for you, too. Just open the door and the truth will be revealed to you as it was to me, through the light of Jesus Christ, our Savior, our King, our God. Thank you, Father. I love you.