Posted on Wednesday, January 04, 2006 - 8:50 pm:
I was told to get on and read the factnet.org by a few that I still speak with that have left the cult. I appreciate the positive. We have had so much pain in our lives. Looking back is like ripping scabs off and bleeding all over again. God is the healer of broken hearts and lives and it is a job that only He can do. I still have family in the group and can't have any contact with them. My kids come and go in the group and the group is trying hard to get their hooks in them. So far they see clear, but the more contact they have can pollute their vision. Please pray.
Posted on Thursday, January 05, 2006 - 4:43 pm:
I became R.A.G. property 1973 before the group became Robert Grove's. It was still in transition from the younger men taking over control from Wilber Johnson and the other elders that came before. My parents were drawn to the group by the Johnson family and started fellowshipping with them before they were married by Maurice Johnson. I was born into the group and raised in a very dysfunctional home. The home fell completely apart and I and my siblings went into "the group foster care". My father trusted a young man with a family that newly came into the group. He was under the protection of Jack Potter. He molested me and a few of my little girl friends from the group. I was the youngest of his victims. My sister spilled the beans at July camp 1973 and all of us were interrogated as to what was going on in our homes and the molester was never prosecuted. We all have lived with the shame of what he did to us the rest of our lives. Everything was supposed to be handled by the group with no outsiders involved. He told me he would kill me if I ever told, so for fear of my life, my story changed many times because I never felt safe, or that I would be protected from him. I know the other girls never told the whole truth either. I was then put into a prominent up and coming leaderís home to be raised in his family. I was encouraged to lie about my family and they wanted me to say that my father molested me. I told them I would say anything about my mother, but not about my father. I was public property and every little childhood misdeed that I did, became men's meeting food. I was taught to serve and be a servant to get "brownie points". I was taken to juvenile hall because I wouldn't give up my eye lash curlers. Tom Murley tried to protect me from the men in charge of my life, but he was powerless. Because I wasnít hard to look at, I was accused of many things by the girls that hated me in the assembly. I had no safety net to fall into or anyone to protect me. At 15 I was marked and told to sit in the front of the meeting and none of my peers could talk to me. I stole a pack of gum. I was silent and refused to talk for 2 months and I was also removed from public school because I had too many friends there and I was studying to become a nurse. Because they couldn't "break me" I was then discarded to the Johnson family who were supposed to give me back to my parents, were I was told I would live out my days as prostitute. I decided that I loved the Lord and that I could serve Him and be normal, not a freak. I saw other believers in my school living normal successful Christian lives, and I knew God did not require me to be a freak to be accepted by Him. I lived with the Johnson family till I married. I learned so many wonderful things that I was able to bring into my own home and family and began a personal relationship with my Jesus. My husband was advised not to marry me because I was "used" and he had been selected for leadership someday. He went against counsel and married me anyway. I wish I could say we lived happily ever after, but we had wonderful years serving the Lord together and raising a young family in the Lord before he was killed. We were marked in 1985 because he was "proud and stiff necked" and would not go along with all the markings. His family told him to just go along with everything so that we could all remain a family. He was too honest to play the hypocrisy game. I know it broke his heart to leave his close knit family behind to follow the Lord. His family blamed me for us leaving and made up all types of stories (that I have learned of from my children) of things that I did and said to my husband. They never even knew him and his close walk with the Lord. I adored and loved and admired the godly man God gave me, to give me value and protection from the group and to raise a family with. He would not compromise his beliefs. I was much weaker in mine. When he was killed, the group glorified their cause by stating "this is what happens when you leave". I almost went back into the group, but the things they said about my husband at their service made me stop real quick. Starting over has been hard and the past still hurts and haunts. The journey has not been easy, but it is mine, with my God holding me tight all the way thro' and showing me," He will never leave me nor forsake me" and that I am valuable and I belong to HIM Forever!
Posted on Friday, January 06, 2006 - 10:12 pm:
Thank you silentdude and lindyrt. It is liberating to tell the stories that have been locked away for so long, and feel the arms of brothers and sisters reaching out to hold you. I feel so sad for the children born into the group that will never see the true light of day. They will live in a false world with a false doctrine and live the Pharisees life. They will never know their need for a savior or have the holy spirit work in their lives. Every thing will be taught by outward rules and laws to obey. You can move up in their games of life, by obeying their rules, hanging out with, and marrying the right person, and think you are right and blessed by God. I have watched my cousin sell his soul for power within the group. He knows the truth and taught it once. I still have his tape "Who are we representing?".
RESPONSE FROM MSSHETTY:
Posted on Sunday, January 08, 2006 - 7:00 pm:
I haven't had a chance to read the posts for a while, but when I saw the post from maranomore today, it broke my heart. Maranomore, I know who you are, and I know exactly who the "up and coming leader's" family you were placed. Unfortunately, my sister was also placed with this family. However, she was willing to be what they wanted her to be outwardly, so she was always considered the "good" girl. Of course those of us who knew them knew that she, and the families own daughter, were certainly no angles. I am so sorry that you had to go through all that. And I am ashamed that those of us that knew how wrong you were being treated did not have the courage to stand up to the men and try to put a stop to it. I grew up with your husband, though he was younger than I was. he was a wonderful christian, and his death was truly a tragedy. I am so glad that you have held on to your faith in God, and have been able to get through.
BACK TO MARANOMORE:
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 2:16 pm:
I am starting back through the Bible again and this morning I read about Abraham and how he was called upon to sacrifice Isaac, his precious son. Isaac bore the wood on his back in a stunning preview of what would be the ultimate sacrifice of THE only begotten Son.
I thought of Mary...and her proclamation "My soul doth magnify the Lord" when she considered the blessing of being the mother of the Messiah...yet what sorrow and pain she must have endured as she witnessed the cruelty to and horrid death of her dear son.
My husband wrote in his journal, marveling that believers can so easily say that they want to taste of the cup of Christ's suffering, remarking that we are not thinking correctly if we could so eagerly mouth that desire, nor could we endure such suffering were it not for His comforting grace.
As beloved children of God, I have come to see that nothing brings us to the feet of Jesus more readily than to be tasting of that cup of suffering. Yet in that position, at the feet of Jesus, we discover mercy overflowing and grace in abundance.
I pray that in this year our faith will be strengthened more and more and that, in joy or in sorrow, we will remain at the feet of Jesus, longing to know Him more.
God BLESS you,
Posted on Monday, January 09, 2006 - 2:48 pm:
Thank you so much for your words. "Encouragement is awesome. It has the capacity to...actually change the course of another human being's day, week, or life. by CHALES SWINDOLL
I started crying here at work after reading what you wrote to me. I didn't realize how much it all still hurt. Thank you for your words. I understand the helpless of not being able to stand up against the crowd and I don't blame anyone. I have learned to be a survivor. That has been part of what has kept me going and alive. I know that people will fail you, but MY GOD NEVER WILL. He has shown His love to me over and over again, and held me tight when I was shunned by everyone. Thank you so much for helping me heal.
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2006 - 2:27 pm:
I went through hell after Tony died and I was scooped up by a "sailor" who took me and my children to the depths of hell and stripped us of everything Tony and I built together. I attribute my naivety to being raised in the group and conditioned to be a people pleaser and victim. I had to walk away from everything to save myself and my children from him. I did turn to the group for some advice and help, and they gave me none. They seemed to be happy that I was in hell.
God brot' a wonderful young man into my life 6 years ago and by his kindness and love, he helped bring my children back to me. They lost all respect for me for making a very bad choice after their daddy's death. Who could blame them? I stuck in too long trying to make such an abusive relationship work and putting up with all his "women in every port", his addiction to pornography, him stealing an forceably persuading things from me. When he started flirting with my 15 year old daughter, I packed up what I could and left.
Isn't it amazing that when you come to the place that God is All you Have...He is all you need?
I started completely over in Estes Park, CO and I wasn't going to let any man near me ever again. (But God had other plans). I tried to pull my children back together and it was complete hell, police in our home, trips to the hospital and before the judge. My middle son had so much hate in him. He learned all the hatred and violence from my 2nd husband and possibly Papa Romo? Todd became just like Dave and my mother and beat all of us up in his fits of blind rage. Todd was raised in the group by Papa for 3 years. I sent him there at 12 years old, because he was going to shoot Dave, after one of Dave's bouts of abuse on me. He lived with Papa until he was 15 and had become a sexual predator under papa and the group's teaching. Papa gave him back to me with all the credit, that I was the cause of him being that way.
Todd has recently given his life back to the Lord and become broken to the point of trying to commit suicide because of the things he had done. He is under the care of some great Christian physiatrist since he got out of the hospital. He is now dating the mother of his son (my 4 year old grandson, Seth Anthony) and they are in counseling together. I stand in awe of what God can do in our lives when we are humble and broken before Him and how He fixes broken lives and hearts.
I am still struggling to let people close to me. I have kept my world very small with just my children and Tony's sister (Kathy Romo) and 2 friends from Visalia. My new husband has a great big heart, big laugh and very broad shoulders (to help me carry my load). His great grandfather was born in Estes and their roots go real deep. (there is NO sailor in him) Everyone knows him and speaks highly of him and his family. Our garage is always full of him and his friends. My 3 children call him "Mother Shaun". He is a constant caregiver (to include his ex-wife's family and children). He is an example of God's unconditional love and grace to all who know him.
Thank you for reaching out to me. My story has so many chapters and in the past I have closed each one and not looked back. This is very hard to open up these chapters and re-live the pain of the past, but also freeing.
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