I wanted to share with you a letter that was written to the community on Friday, 22 February, 2008 1:26:25 Am, it was sent by Dave, i think it makes for a very intersting read, what do you think?.......
".....So often when members leave the community, it seems to come across that it was a fun club to belong to for a while, but now they want to look around and see if there is something that would be more fun, easier, or whatever. Obviously, some of that can just be explained by saying that they "backslid". But I wonder....
It's so easy to talk the talk about living by faith, and to at least appear to be walking the walk just by being a part of this community. But I think the vital ingredient that only God can see is whether or not you are growing in personal accountability to him.
Now I want to go from the sublime to something that may SEEM ridiculous to some of you.
As most of you know by now, I have been trying for the past 25 years to teach members of the JCs that when we talk about "a lot" of something, it is two words and not one word. After 25 years, I can say that I have achieved relative success. But the only thing that makes such a point seem ridiculous is just that it HAS taken so long to change the most tiny little insignificant grammatical error (in a language that must have a hundred thousand such rules to be remembered in order to communicate well). The second thing (which I have probably only been working hard on for about ten years now, is to get people to know when to say "I" and when to say "me" ("we" or "us", etc.) I have said it and said it and said it, that there is a very simple rule that will tell you the right word to use each time you start to say it (without having to check a book or ask anyone else), if only you will use that rule, and yet I have to report, that after ten years of preaching this, we are lucky if people get it right even fifty percent of the time (which would be roughly the success rate if you just flipped a coin each time it came up in conversation).
The reason I DON'T think this is ridiculous, is that the Bible says if we cannot be faithful in little things, how can we be faithful in big things. If our general attitude with regard to correct grammar is that we cannot even be bothered with THINKING about what is the correct word to use on one very specific and very common mistake, then what reason is there to believe that we are going to get serious about changing anything else in our lives?
Like Glenn says on the forum, "That's the way I talk." In other words, take it or leave it, I'm not going to change. What is the real spirit behind such stubbornness? Isn't it pride? And is it ridiculous of me to express some concern about such pride? The idea with getting people to write "a lot" as two words was just to get them to make the very first step in changing thousands of things about themselves. But if it took 25 years to do that, then obviously we never ARE going to get to a place where we just accept valid criticisms as quickly as they are given.
Now, while I am in a grumpy mood, I want to talk about something else that I have discussed at length quite a number of times, and that is the matter of counsel. I'm not saying that everyone is having problems with this one, but it does seem to be more than just one or two people. We get those people who will arbitrarily make some huge decisions which could have worldwide long-standing effects on all of us, and they do it with hardly even a THOUGHT about what others might think about it, and then if I get upset about it, they start raising their hands and asking me if they can go to the toilet (or some similarly trivial decision that doesn't really need my input). My feeling is that this over-reaction is almost a form of rebellion... well, actually, I guess that I see the unwillingness to seek counsel in the first place as a form of rebellion too. It should be something that just happens naturally most of the time (and only becomes a problem in those little borderline issues where it's not clear whether you should seek counsel or not).
I want to especially say this with regard to posting on various forums around the world. You don't have to pass everything by me, but I think it would be good if people sense that they are saying something fairly critical of someone else, or something which may be questionable, if they could find the JC closest to them and ask for a second opinion (at least). Often I think that people KNOW they are just letting off steam or that they are getting into an area where they are not really sure of what to say, and that is why they DON'T want a second opinion. (I know, because my flesh really reacts against Cherry always telling me to tone it down when I'm writing something that is expressing my anger about something. Ha, she hasn't read this letter yet, so I may have to rewrite it if she has the time to check it for me when I finish!) But really, when you get counsel on something it is a great form of protection for yourself. If someone complains later, you can say, "Well, I shared it around with my team here, and they all approved it." See, you have others to share the blame with, and it's not half so hard to take then!
I won't go into the specifics, but there have been things that people have said on forums lately that have been a little embarrassing, and that do not seem to represent our position, similar to the statement about us not believing in birthdays. When that happens, people like Craig just love to cause division by putting it onto me or the rest of us in general, and forcing us to disagree with one another publicly. We have seen that happening with stupid things that Brian and his ilk have to say on their site... we are able to get them fighting one another over it. But please, don't let it happen to us.
Well, enough ranting from me. Time for Cherry to proof read for me now.
I ‘ate it when peeps like Dave waste words, rambling and rantin on and on when a few sentences would suffice! Sp I is gonna trim alot of surplus ramblings from Dave’s hemail and just sumorise what he means forsure. I wil try not to zay alot!
‘When people leave us, we tell you they have backslidden but I’m not convinced about that myself. It could be that I was too soft on them. I am frustrated now that I cannot tell who is gonna leave next, but I sure would like to prevent it happening cause we have a lot more books to sell.
I want you to show me something that only God should see, evidence of your personal accountability to me. First up, you need to talk like me. Spell like me. Write like me. Say what I say and write what I write. Accept my criticisms unquestioningly. That will give me an assurance of how willing you are to be manipulated by me.
I am a grumpy old sod, but I am the apostle and I am entitled to be grumpy. Lets get this straight, I give the counsel and you take it. I go spare when some little nit makes up his own mind about insignificant things, like posting something on a forum. For example saying that we trick people into taking our books and giving us their dollars, by dressing like them and telling them they don’t need their own money. Are you guys dumber than a bag of hammers? It drives me nuts. I am in charge here. I am the captain of this sinkin ship and I wanna control the forums! I am trying to cause division on RR but you guys better shape up and try to look clone.ish over here. You need to copy me alot. Do what I do. Stop trying to look meek juso you get my permission to use the toilet. You cant go, you rebellious lot. No breaks until you obey rules, lern my way of doing things and distribute a million more of them books.