Exiting the 2x2 Cult
Exiting the 2x2 cult and getting out of the 2x2 cult was difficult for me and very difficult for other people I've met. Some people got out quite easily and moved on quickly typically because they were not raised a 2x2 and only participated for a few weeks or months. Exiting the 2x2 religion can affect your: feelings, thoughts, word choice, reasoning, stress levels, health, family relationships, struggles, finances and so on.
People exit the cult for many different reasons. Most commonly they feel frustrated and it no longer pleases them. I will present answers from scripture for the strongest reasons to leave a cult and prosper while doing it.
Some people base decisions on feelings. If something is uncomfortable, then they may avoid it. It may only be extremely bad offenses that would cause them to leave a cult.
Some people base decisions on beliefs. If teachings and doctrines are wrong, they may bring up the issue, but care more about truth and honesty that about how people feel. This was my case. I cared that I was following the Bible and wanted God's will. Putting things into words and comparing them to the Bible was important to me.
I was born and raised a 2x2. My relationship with my mother wasn't strong, nor with my dad. My relationship with my sister was very weak. So that is my background going into the process of exiting the cult. Some people have very strong family ties. I did not.
When I was struggling with questions, struggling with conflicts with workers and elders, then of course my folks were told the workers' perspective. My dad was told that I was "mental" and came over to help me. It was through my dad sitting down and talking with me and trying to help me that he came to the conclusion that I was not "mental", but was telling the truth and he left the cult months later. Please bear in mind that my father is not a good communicator. Despite this, truth prevailed.
Financial Hurdles of Exiting the Cult
After I quit going to meetings, my mom informed me that the money that was coming to me through my inheritance from my grandpa (through my mom being the facilitator of the trust), that the money would be stopped. I suppose she thought the financial pressure would cause me to go back to meetings? No, rather it was a huge offense, a violation of her promise and solidified my views of the workers and their disciples.
So I went from being committed to full time school (I was getting straight A's and learning quickly) to not having any money, in middle of a quarter of school and living at a friend's place who was going through a very difficult time in his life.
Housing Difficulties After I Quit Going to Meetings
And if the devil didn't think that all this was enough, the Portland worker David Nealon told Phu that I was the cause of all Phu's problems, and that if Phu kicked me out of his house, that all of Phu's problems would go away. Phu told this to me, and then kindly asked me to move out. So now I have: disappointment with being lied to by workers and family, no money, going to school, no job and now nowhere to live.
And so I had to move out and moved into a leaky trailer that I had bought from Bruce Filener, a 2x2 Bible study elder in Molala, OR. I set it up in a trailer park because it was the only thing I could afford on my credit cards. It was interesting to reflect back that banks are more likely to help you out than the "friends of the workers". Even the bank's motive of making money on interest was more pure than the workers and their friends.
Job Difficulties after Exiting the 2x2 Cult
And then I went to work at the quickest job I could get in that tough economy (high school degree and not even completed two years at a community college, being top of my class). I got a job cleaning windows. And if that wasn't bad enough, being broke, living in a little trailer and washing windows for Clearly Amazing Window Cleaning, a coworker started making sexual jokes about me. I complained to the manager and he put this man as my supervisor! Then I ended up getting fired because he didn't have enough work to keep me busy. And if that wasn't insult enough, he told me I was a great employee, and then kept employing the man who was making sexual jokes to me!
So, in short, if you think it's going to be easy getting out of the cult, it might not be. The cult and the world can be cruel. But I believed in God, and I haven't been disappointed.
I started my own business cleaning windows, then gutters and then moved onto moss treatment and removal. I was in business for 11 years. I worked off the $15 grand in debts that I had accumulated in trying to get back on my feet. My 2x2 mindset was the hardest thing to overcome. Having so much to learn without a mentor was not easy. But God is good.
I didn't lose any friends getting out of the cult. I realized they were not friends. They were just people that I associated with because I was following the workers. Once I quit following the workers, they were not my friends. It was that simple. I don't miss any of them. They never loved me. Never did, never will. They don't know love. They just know cult appearances of acting nice and friendly because that is how they recruit and exist on the surface level.
When I quit going to meetings, there was no fellowship with the 2x2 friends. I was beginning to have faith in God and they wanted nothing to do with this. I started thinking about things that the 2x2s didn't want to think about and would not allow them to think about. We had no fellowship or common ground. Later, when I became a Christian, I saw that the cult was satanic. They teach lies and enjoy their lies. They don't want to talk about the scripture.
One of the things that I enjoy about the scripture is listening to Jesus Christ talk to me. I read the Bible and his words are there for me to read. His sayings are for me, and he speaks to my heart. Someone said that if you want to know the thoughts of God, then read the Bible. And if you want to hear God speak audibly to you, then read the Bible out loud.
Many people who leave the cult simply join another cult. Or they become atheist or agnostic, hating God and denying his existence. I understand this. If I hadn't become a Christian, I probably would have done the same thing.
Some people join a "Christian" church, but to them, it is just another organization. They never have a relationship with Jesus Christ. They are not born again, but just go to a church now instead of meetings. I understand this. They are used to the cult type of relationships and have just switched organizations. They were born of the will of the workers and now they are born of the will of some other preacher. And when it comes down to it, they will follow that preacher or their new church friends over God every day of the week.
Some people who leave the cult still believe that the 2x2 cult is OK. They think that maybe it was just a run-in with one or two people. I used to think that one or two workers were off until I did some interviewing of the workers. When I lived in Texas, I thought it was a few workers and a few elders that were "off" and tried going to a different meeting. Some people, if they weren't kicked out or hadn't been encouraged to leave by someone else, would still be going to meetings. And many who have left the meetings feel like they were the ones doing something wrong and end up going back to meetings out of feelings of guilt. Some people live in guilt for years, believing that they have "lost out" and are going to hell because they have not been attending meetings. That's a horribly sad situation.
Getting out of the cult is difficult. Getting the cult out of us is more difficult. We cannot save ourselves and heal ourselves, we need the power of God to leave a cult and become children of God.
The best thing to help us in getting out of the cult is the lessons we can learn in Exodus. It was Moses' faith in God that helped lead the children of Israel out of Egypt, called "the house of bondage". It is amazing how relevant the Bible is.
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|To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me. - Jesus Christ speaking to Saul, see Act 26:18, see Salvation through Jesus Christ.|