QUESTIONS & RESPONSES
♦ Visitor accuses us of being just another “God channel” greedy for money
On January 27, 2013, we received the following comment:
Once again it seems you're another TV god channel after making money.
To the author, it appears you visited our site, saw the Donations page, and misjudged our motives and intent. We believe if you look at the contents of the site, you may form a different opinion. We believe the sincerity of our message and our intent is revealed in the content of the site. The Donations page is there simply to provide an opportunity for others, who are so inclined, to share in our ministry. We do not solicit donations.
Since you are not the first person to challenge our motives, we thought it would be beneficial to make a public response. By so doing, we hope to inform our visitors of our intent, and to let them know that while we welcome donations, we engage in this ministry for the purpose of uplifting the spiritual conversation worldwide, and directing all persons, including our brothers and sisters among Jehovah's Witnesses, to the Kingdom of the Heavens.
This website began as a labor of love of two individuals and continues to be such. We had no idea that the website and the interest in the website would grow as rapidly as it has. What began as a part-time prospect has now become a full time endeavor which requires the operators of this website to significantly cut back on secular work in order to maintain the site and continue to do this work.
Recently, one of us was diagnosed with cancer and is currently unable to contribute financially while he is undergoing treatment, although his illness has not stopped him from carrying on the ministry face to face with everyone he meets in the hospitals, doctor's offices, even the ambulances. You can see the effect his personal ministry is having on other cancer patients by reading General Emails and Emails from our Association in support of our work. We are assured by faith of his recovery, so in the meantime, the work continues.
No, we are not independently wealthy either. In fact, we live from month to month. A few of our friends know our financial condition and choose to help us make ends meet. And some of our visitors have likewise made small contributions, however, those contributions do not cover even 2% of our expenses.
Nevertheless, we will do this work whether we receive contributions or not. Money is not the goal. Never has been. Our goal is to uplift the spiritual conversation worldwide and uplift the association of Jehovah=s Witnesses. Our reward is in the heavens.
We know that our work has significantly changed thousands of lives for the better. We deem it a wonderful privilege to serve the Christ by reviving his original teachings. When others chose to help us carry out this work and lighten our load by making financial contributions, we readily and appreciatively accept it. And we firmly believe the Father is on our side, as has been proven to us time and time again in ways that are not altogether comprehensible or explicable. These matters we do not make public because we are not trying to draw attention to ourselves individually.
The reason we provide a way for visitors to make voluntary contributions is because they asked us to. In fact, the first link that allows visitors to make a contribution was not put on the site until 6 months after we began, and only then in response to visitor requests. A couple of our contributors explained that they want to share in our ministry and a monetary contribution is the only way they know how. And because we are struggling to keep this site going, we gladly accept their assistance.
Thus, this endeavor is far from a money making scheme. You have wrongly judged us. However, if you do not appreciate what we are doing, you are under no obligation to contribute. You can take whatever benefits you gain here and go on your way. Contributions should come from the heart.
As for us, this website will continue to operate for as long as the Father wills, with or without third party financial support. Our purpose is not being accomplished by the might or wealth of men, but by the spirit of the Father. Amen.
♦ Response to an email about financial and other struggles
On March 2, 2014, we received the following email from a brother who we have been communicating with for some time who is struggling financially. We get other emails occasionally from our brothers who are likewise suffering. So we thought we would share a portion of his email and our response in the hope that it might encourage those who are undergoing difficulties:
“Hello Brothers! Didn't have much to say really, just wanted to "talk" I'll guess. I’m in a youth hostel right now, being homeless is no fun at all but I can cope for now. I have decided to move back to the city were I used to live before. I have no friends here. I have two friends in my old city, ex-witnesses actually, but they have been severely damaged by the watchtower religion. It's a shame. They are very timid, mild tempered and honest. I'll pray they will find faith (the Father) again. Perhaps I can help them in that regard.
“And also I'm very lonely at the moment. The big difference from now and then is that I have come to know the real truth, Jesus teachings thanks to you. You have helped many moving on despite being abused by religious propaganda. To regain faith in a loving God, not condemnation.
“Strange enough, an "elder" called me some weeks ago in, he lives in that same city I will be moving to. Haven’t talked to him in over a year. He asked if he should arrange so that I could met with elders in my current city. I said no, no point. I told him that I haven’t lost faith in Jesus and that totalitarian religious leadership is noting but bad. I also said that watchtower doctrine on many topics is simply wrong. He’s the one being misled. We said goodbye but after some time I sent him a [message] with your web-address and hoped that would clear up matters as to why I'm not going back to Jehovah’s Witnesses. Hopefully he will see the light, if God wants him to. He was nice, but totally indoctrinated with Watchtower propaganda.
“All too often I feel as the very least of all the least of Christ’s brothers, not exactly a role model, being homeless and all. But I let the Lord judge me when that day comes. I will take no more judging from others. Take care dear Brothers. I'll be in touch.”
Dear brother, it is great to hear from you. Thanks for thinking of us. Please do not discount yourself because of your financial status. We will share with you that we, too, struggle greatly financially. As you may know, one of us due to health is unable to work. The other one can only work part-time because of the time it takes to write articles and administer this site. So we never know if we will have enough money to pay our rent and utilities. It is a struggle every single month. Even today, we have no idea how we will pay rent.
Although our ministry is positively affecting millions of people, only about 10 people have made a donation in the 2 years we have conducted this ministry. We assume it is either because people doubt the honesty of our motives, or because they think we must have money based on the quality and professionalism of the site. Either way, we are giving it our very best – our first fruits – and letting financial matters work themselves out. Something good always happens to take us through to the next month. And to those who check in with us to ask if are okay because we have not posted something in a while, it is because we are likely working secularly to make ends meet. But do not worry, we will always return to this ministry. We have a lot more to do.
We feel very blessed to do this work. As Jesus said, he brought his message to the lowly ones, not those rich in this system of things, because such ones will appreciate it. We deem it honor because we know the struggle in this life will be as a blink compared to the glory that awaits those who exercise faith in Christ Jesus. But we cannot deny that it is difficult and sometimes discouraging. We tell you this because we want you to know that we truly understand your plight, and that we are not just spouting superlative statements from an ivory tower.
These are indeed difficult times, hard to deal with. But not impossible to deal with. In all of our trials, we have confidence that the Father will make a way out. He has never failed us. And He will never fail you. What it requires sometimes is a readjustment in our outlook and being thankful for what we have, knowing that there are many worse off than we are.
But look at what can be accomplished with practically nothing! The Father is being preached, the Son is being honored and the faith sons are being gathered together! Our brothers are becoming free from religious oppression and suppression, and learning self-governance. Each year a larger throng of voices cry out in united confession of our Lord at the Memorial Suppers. It is our hope that one day, practically the entire planet raises its voice to honor the one who has been given all authority in heaven and on earth. These joys are priceless!
At the same time, we realize that there are many brothers and sisters who are not struggling financially, but they are struggling in other ways. Life on earth is a great tribulation. But the inner strength developed through tests of endurance and when under fire only refines the core of our faith. And by exercising faith in the promises of Jesus, we can all come out victorious and begin the real life in the heavenly ascent to the Father.
We keep in mind that this world is just a training ground – the preliminary trial run in preparation for the great race. But as more and more people join in the ministry to bring heaven down, eventually our planet will be more friendly, less stressful, more peaceful. When the true good news is preached throughout the entire inhabited earth, then will come the end to suffering, sorrow and unrighteousness.
This is what Jesus taught back in 33 C.E. Imagine if his followers had continued with his true message instead of being sidetracked by self-promotion and greed. Imagine how close our planet would be to the conditions described by the Hebrew prophets if the freedom Jesus brought had expanded instead of contracted. We believe a return to his actual, authentic, original, plain and open teachings is the key to solving all of our extraordinary difficulties. But because mankind is so far behind, it will take time.
It is said that good people care about their children; whereas spiritual people also care about their grandchildren, their great grandchildren, etc. Spiritual people are willing to put in the time now with a view to making the world better for future generations. They understand that life is not a sprint. It is a marathon. And some sacrifices will need to be made for the greater good.
And we must accept that the Father is expecting us to do our part in gaining salvation. How easy it would be for the Father to wipe out all unrighteousness in one great war. But what would we learn? In time, mankind would find itself back in the same situation because nothing really would have changed. Man would just be like spoiled children who expect their daddy to fix everything. How much better to stand up for ourselves and work to make our lives and our world better now. The Father and Christ Jesus will certainly bless those efforts as they are doing now. And we have no doubt of the excitement of our celestial family at man’s awakening to his responsibilities.
As we work to bring heaven down, we must also expect the fact that there may be some upheavals, political and otherwise. There may be local wars and conflagrations around the world as the sons of God shake off the shackles of antiquated systems. Those who will not grow will be left behind and most of them will suffer destruction at their own hands as a result of their own willfulness and ignorance.
But let us take this time to settle in for the long haul, keeping in mind the betterment of our children and grandchildren. Let us work not only for self, but also for posterity. Let us work with Jesus to reconcile mankind to its Father so that Jesus can hand over to the Father a perfected universe that found its way, not by military might, but by spirit. And let us endure our trials with joy knowing that a wonderful and unimaginable future awaits us. This is our prayer.
As for you, our brother, you are a great role model because in spite of your circumstances, and in spite of the religious abuse you suffered at the hands of the Watchtower organization, you have found your way to the Father through Christ Jesus. You are more of a victor than a victim. And while you have your down times, you always return to the Father in full faith. That is something to be proud of. We are glad to have your association and to call you brother.
Please continue in this course and we will meet one day, if not on this side of life, then certainly on the other side when these trials and tribulations will be just a passing dream. Pray for us as we pray for you. And please keep in touch.
♦ Are you all in this for the money?
On May 6, 2014, we received the following comment and inquiries:
“Hello, I have 2 questions for you. What version of Bible do you use? I had recently found a facebook page for ex-jw's and it has infuriated me the last few weeks. I was raised a witness and for the past 7 years I have been disfellowshipped. I have spent the past 7 years with no friends, feeling guilty for not going back to the religion and then-reading peoples posts and realizing that I was lied to most of my life is very upsetting. I see the [Jehovah’s Witness] organization for what it is. Money. That is all. I am curious if you are all in this for Money? Thank you for your time.”
To the author, thank you for your email and for visiting our site.
On this website, we use the New World Translation and the Revised New World Translation because one of the main purposes of the site is to reach out to Jehovah’s Witnesses. On our new site, www.TheFaithSonsofGod.org, we use other translations, primarily Today New International Version, because we are reaching out to all people and that is a widely accepted version.
As to your question about money, we have been asked similar questions before. We understand your hurt and anger against the Watchtower organization, but it is not fair to paint everyone who carries out a ministry with the same brush. Part of the journey of a son of God is to train our perceptive powers to be able to discern right from wrong, and truth from error. (Hebrews 5:14) Unfortunately the Watchtower Society has done a great deal to poison our brothers against giving to anyone other than themselves, including all other charitable and philanthropic organizations, both religious and non-religious. Their doctrines are so fear inducing that many refrain from giving gifts to their own family and friends for fear of being accused of celebrating birthdays or holidays. So we do understand your paranoia against supporting a ministry of any kind.
We also understand that it takes time for these deeply ingrained wounds to heal. But there is a great need for true spiritual refreshment, especially among Jehovah’s Witnesses, so we choose to carry out this ministry tirelessly and unselfishly using our own personal resources, along with gifts from a few others who know how much we appreciate them. And we are not ashamed to say that a good work that one is benefitting from should always be supported, if one is able to do so. Nevertheless, whether those who benefit from the information on this site show their appreciation or not has no bearing on whether we continue.
We hope in time, the damage done by the Watchtower Society to the spirit of giving is assuaged by gaining a proper understanding of our loving and generous God and His Son Christ Jesus, and the true Christian spirit. (Matthew 6:2-4; Matthew 7:11; Matthew 10:42; Luke 6:38; Acts 10:1-2; Acts 28:10) As Paul wrote, ‘there is more happiness in giving than in receiving. (Acts 20:35)