The call back

I was wondering if he would call me back.

And he did.

This morning, I talked to my Dad after well, I don’t remember how many years.

He was hesitant, slightly awkward sounding, but yet anxious to talk.  He proceeded to tell me he had been busy the day before going door to door, giving a talk (Jehovah’s Witness language for preaching) in the evening, and had missed seeing my call until later at night.

We talked about my message that we had moved.

Mid discussion, I prayed for the right words.  I prayed for what I needed.

Compassion is what Jesus gave me.  Compassion, and the confidence to speak boldly in love.

I heard sadness when he told me that he still loves me and thinks of me, and that it’s just a shame.

I could sense a tired man in his 80’s.  I could hear the sadness, but also a holding on to a life of what he believes.

As gently and lovingly as I could I told him I loved him too, but that he needed to understand that any of my past sins have been forgiven and forgotten by Jesus and they are gone and in the past, and it was too bad he didn’t feel that way too.

He mentioned something about yes, God sits in judgment of us, and that he does say he will forgive us.

I told him Christ forgave me years ago, and I was secure in that belief.  I was good about it.  I wish he felt that way too.  God sits in judgment, not men, or more importantly religious organizations.  That was something he would had to come to grips with.

He started talking about other things.  Pleasantries, like the weather, and how his sister, my aunt was doing.

When he said he thought of me over the years, I told him that I thought of him too, and while I may have wanted to call him or talk to him before I didn’t.  I didn’t because I felt like I was honoring his statements of no contact.  But that part of me wanted to just call anyway because I don’t agree with his position.  So I felt like I was honoring his wishes but I did not agree with it.  This also was something he had to come to grips with.

It was like our roles were reversed, where at one time I would have been quiet and listened while he talked; now I was bold.

A few more pleasantries, and then the conversation ended.

I’m not looking back on what else I could have or might have said.

What will become of this?  I don’t know.

But I know who does.

Lord,

Thank you for giving me a glimpse of seeing through your eyes.

Forgive me when I look just through mine at those around me……..including my Dad.

This is in your hands.

I trust you.

In Jesus name,

Amen.

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11 thoughts on “The call back

  1. Hi, I’m Ryan. I was raised as a JW but was disfellowshipped at age 18 when I eloped. I am turning 30 this year. I really think it takes an ex-witness to understand what it’s like to lose family and the impact it has. It has probably been the most painful thing I have gone through and continue to go back to. But now, knowing an authentic relationship with Christ (and sneaking in some Buddhism here and there), I could never go back.

    For the first two years my parents kept some minimal contact. They had such high hopes that I would get myself reinstated. And I did for a time pursue that, but never felt right about it.

    At about the five year mark, my father wouldn’t take any of my calls and my mother would take them three times a year. It was always, come back, come back to the truth, the end is nearer than you know.

    When I became a protestant Christian, things got really bad. Part of it was my fault for using my “instinctual” JW techniques of preaching, but now in the context of the grace of God and Christ on the cross. My mother, a pioneer, of course called me an apostate and attacked my character for choices I’d made over the years.

    For the past few years it’s been dead silence. The heat was too much for me, and they just seemed to be digging in their heals and not answering the calls.

    It’s so hard to be turning 30 and still feel like I need them. But as my counsellor puts it, it’s conditional love. They’ll love me “if”.

    I am glad you had a good conversation with your Dad. My Dad is a much more reasonable guy. I was able to reach him on his work phone a while back and I told him I loved him despite what divides us and he said, “I love you too son, but I have to go now.” There was a gentleness in his voice.

    I don’t know what the future holds, if they’ll ever want their son back just because I am in fact their son. I know I am not going back to their faith. I pray for them, and try to remember the good times in my childhood.

    I hope that Christ can use me for good someday.

    If you had any suggestions for me and this so complex situation, what I should do, or shouldn’t, would you please get in touch with me.

    Thanks for writing this post. I am lucky to have read it.

    • Ryan,

      Thank you for writing and sharing your story, and your pain.

      I understand. It is going through the five stages of grief over a core relationship(s).

      Keep praying. Continue to share your story. It is freeing.

      When you want to remember the good times of your childhood, do it. And find the joy in it. You had good times, remember them.

      Satan claims a victory when we doubt the power of the Cross. He squirms with delight when we feel unworthy. He tries to choke us with all that crap that was fed into our heads.

      So we lay it down at the cross, as many times as we need to.

      Be assured of your salvation. Our sins, once confessed, have been forgiven, and forgotten. Remember the promise of John 3:16-18.

      I’ve been praying if I’m the one that is supposed to clear the veil of confusion for my families eyes to the real truth, that He uses me for that purpose. If not, I pray that he places people around them to open their eyes. I will pray that for your family too.

      Ryan, please know that Jesus Christ already does and will use you for good.

      He never wastes anything, especially our pain.

      Blessings to you,

      Denise

      2 Cor. 12:9-10
      But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

  2. Denise you are a very wise woman. The exchange above me humbled me in a way I have never felt. I will pray beside you and Ryan also. Blessings to you both.

  3. I agree with Lexisnana–you are a wise woman. And, it was wonderful to hear that your father called you back. My thoughts are with both you and your father.

    • Thank you Sheryl! I’m heading over to see what treasures you’ve written from your Grandmother’s diary, thanks so much for stopping by!

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