Why I Made the Choice I Did
I WAS raised in northern New Brunswick, Canada. In 1958 my mother started studying the Bible with Jehovah’s Witnesses, and eventually I was required to attend the congregation meetings even though I was more interested in doing other things. But after finishing high school in 1963 I was free to do what I had always dreamed about—pursuing a career that would bring responsibility, prominence and money.
After leaving the University of New Brunswick in the middle of my third year, I started working for the International Nickel Company of Canada, which had some 20,000 employees in Ontario. Within two years I was in a supervisory position. After this I transferred to the Industrial Engineering Department, where I eventually was sent to many different plants to introduce new production methods. I was meeting all the “right people,” getting to know all the right things. Everything was rosy for the future in that spring of 1973.
Yet I wasn’t happy. Something was missing, even though I was seriously involved with a very kind young woman whom I had been going with since 1970. Try as I might to deny the fact, I knew that a good relationship with my Creator was missing.
After visiting my parents in the summer of 1973, I realized that I must start studying the Bible again. So I stopped one of the elders of Jehovah’s Witnesses on the street one day and asked him to study with me. That’s when things started to happen.
The trouble started with my girl friend. She was never really against my studying the Bible. That would have made things more simple perhaps. She just couldn’t comprehend my interest in spiritual matters and refused to accept basic Bible teachings, including the teaching that this system will eventually end, to be replaced by God’s righteous new order.—2 Pet. 3:11-13; 1 John 2:15-17.
Also, shortly afterward I was approached by the manager of the plant and asked if I would return to a supervisory capacity, where I would be trained for General Foreman. This was a position I had worked toward for years; it is one seldom reached by a person short of age 30.
I realized that I must make a choice. My girl friend was not interested in Bible truths, but we did love each other and had much in common in other ways. For weeks I pondered. It came down to this: I could either serve Jehovah God or please myself and my employers, but not both. So I broke off my relationship with my girl friend and turned down the job offer. Then, after symbolizing my dedication to serve Jehovah by water baptism, I decided to enter the full-time witnessing activity as a pioneer.
I submitted my resignation on May 1, 1974, explaining my reasons to my boss. Two days later my phone rang at work. It was my boss. He had been told that the company could not afford to lose people of my caliber and that obviously I was going to another company in a better position. So I was offered a promotion to head office, effective immediately. I was to assume the responsibilities of “Supervisor of Industrial Engineers in All Mines,” with a corresponding increase in wages. I refused immediately, and started pioneering the following month, and have continued ever since.
True, I could have stayed in my well-paying job and still have been a part-time publisher of the Kingdom message. But my conscience would not permit it. I was so thankful that Jehovah had let this system go on long enough for me to come into his organization. Also, I was sick about all the rotten things I had done over the years, and about wasting the golden opportunity that I had to accept and act upon Bible truths when I was young.
So I felt that if I could aid even one person to learn of Jehovah God it would be better than all the money that I could make at my fancy jobs. I wanted to show Jehovah that I appreciated his patience and love and his forgiveness. I am still trying to do that, and with Jehovah’s help will continue to do so.—Contributed.