Knock. Knock. Knock.
Who in the world is that? It is Saturday morning and I am at home with the little children I care for. As far as I know, we are not expecting anyone.
It is 1970 and I have just quit university – another sixties fatality. I am now a house parent with Children’s Aid, in Ottawa. I help care for four children -two boys and two girls -who have been taken from their families for one reason or another. They have been devastated by their circumstances and desperately need this surrogate parenting.
No. Don’t bother, Nancy. I will get it. And I open the door….Oh, it is LIllian and Frank, the Jehovah’s Witnesses who asked whether they could return and do some Bible study with me…
Hi. Come in. OK, kids. You will have to be quiet while I talk with Lillian and Frank. FInd something to do for awhile. And, mostly, they do, though they come and go while we are talking about Jehovah and the 144,000, good works and non-existence…
It is kind of interesting. From my childhood, I have bits and pieces of Bible stories, many little biblical songs stored away, and mostly good memories of my Anglican church background. But I have long-since lost any active interest in it. I have not attended church since I was confirmed at the age of twelve. I received a Beatles record as a confirmation gift from my parents, and that was that. I have not read the Bible, talked of faith, been to any church since then. My systematic knowledge of biblical truth is zero. I have no idea that God is alive, that Christ is God, that Jesus died as a payment for sin, that we are sinners in the first place…In other words, I am a perfect Jehovah’s Witness prospect.
So I listen and I think. The kids come and go. And we talk and talk…Eventually, it is time for them to leave….Bye! Thanks!
Then I ponder. How do I process all this? Is what they say true or is it not true? Is their god real or not real? I don’t know how to begin to evaluate any of this. I simply don’t have the tools. But then I begin to do some bottom-line thinking. That, I can do. IF God is truly there, IF he exists at all, surely he is a God who loves – didn’t my little Sunday School songs teach me that? And surely he would be compassionate and caring toward these little children I live with. Yet, Frank and Lillian didn’t even ask their names. They paid no attention to them whatsoever. IF there is a God, they simply can’t be representing him.
And that is why I didn’t become a Jehovah’s Witness.