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From: "tledonne" <>  | Block Address | Add to Address Book
Date: Thu, 22 Mar 2001 14:22:32 -0500
Subject: Re: [x-cobu] The Cobu Straw that Broke Our Backs

None of us would have to think twice---everything you say rings of COBU and
its effects.  Steve had problems with those everyday skills for a few
reasons.  For one, we didn't do them in COBU (taxes, food shop, bills, car
registrations, etc).  Not saying Stewart personally did all this for us (he
did very, very little), but there were just a few that took care of these
things for everyone.  Coming out from there, it's a big wake up call to
being responsible in these areas.   I think my husband and some of the
earlier ones were better off in this regard.  In the olden days, we had
fellowship houses that ran more like a family and they needed all hands to
pitch in to keep things running smoothly.  Even then, because of our young
age, it was a struggle and, quite honestly, I don't think our minds were
really there----the focus was always on witnessing and working just enough
to get by way back.   Then things changed.  We were all called to Manhattan
to be trained.  We certainly weren't trained in these areas though.  Now all
we did was sleep a little, work a lot, have Bible studies and witness.  And
then eventually that  turned into sleep and work pretty much, with an
occasional word from on high to "sustain" us.  The living conditions were
horrible, but so were we, so, so what??  We were no good, our salvation
became questionable because we were so bad or stupid or whatever.  He called
us retards at points, he called us vampires sucking the life out of the
fellowship, etc, etc.   Steve and the rest of us came out because either we
didn't quite believe what Stewart said anymore, or we knew we would never
measure up, or, for myself, with children I knew I didn't want to become
like that.  I was fortunate.  I had seen real Christians in action before
and I read the Bible before I went in there.  Even so, it was a powerful
force to reckon with in my mind , even when I began to see some of what was
wrong.  Our lives became entwined with those around us more than what is
normally seen---really, more like a family, but a family with conditional
love.   I think eventually it comes down to trusting God loves you and wants
you no matter how you feel about yourself.  I mean, if we were all perfect,
Jesus wouldn't have had to die, right?  He loves us.  It's worth yelling.
HE LOVES US.  Thank you so much for writing what you have.  You have
capsulated much of what we have spoken about for years, and from a vantage
point we never could.   God bless you, Paul.  GOD BLESS YOU, PAUL.

PS  I would like to hear about your mission life if you care to write about