Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Dad posted

My father responded to a few commenters.
gotharddad said...
I pray for all be they of any race or creed for the love of THE LORD OUR GOD sees us for who we are and what we value over all. Through HIM is is I who ask for the blessings and courage to face this in the NAME OF THE FATHER.
To Deana. You do not know your Bible as well as you profess because if you did the holiest of commandments would stick out to you and show you that "RUTH" is dishonoring one of God's most holy. Inscribed by GOD himself and asked as the first promise is HONOR THY FATHER AND MOTHER. Important to the point of repetition in Ephesians. This is a trust of faith to honor them in all times in disagrement and agreements. RUTH will not be whole until she can get back to the basic trust in GODS WORD. We love our daughter so loving parents have expectations she has not met as GOD loves us with expectations.

To Michael Mock. The way I live was set before me by the HOLIEST OF HOLIES. GOD requires it for them that will enjoy eternity in HIS precense. My life is good. What life do you have without trust in HIM? I have followed a program of faith to be debtless this makes me happy. My spirit is replenished by the walk I have with my Savior. I have a holy, GOD fearing wife sanctioned by the covenants of the Bible who has walked with me for most of my life. We know no divorce because we believe in the covenant of marriage therefore I am fulfilled and happy. Our children living in our honor are happy. The very small sadness we feel is about "Ruth" and our son who chose this life of worldiness and they were raised in the same way as the kids who stayed and returned to us whole so we keep praying that they too will return to live God's promise.

Quiverful isn't a lifestyle for those who pray upon the scripture which is why it will never be for everyone. Choosing to allow God to be in control of the opening and closing of the womb is a calling that you respond to with right spirit and heart or one that you ignore because of your own desires and needs which don't coincide with the Bible. We don't judge others for not having the faith to walk in the LORDS TRUST but we pray for them to find the strength to open themselves and give it to GOD. Speaking man to man you should try it and watch how your life opens.

Man and woman were created different for HIS PURPOSES and you fight still to be equals in yolk. Purpose to find HIS PURPOSE.

He also sent me an e-mail.
I and your mother prayed to know if we were to respond to your friends on the internet. We believe that GOD is working through you to allow us to show the other side to your speetious, unfounded words against HIS PLAN and we must respond to show the other side. GOD is using YOU ****(Ruth). I am proud to be a Gothard Dad which we believe was as you say passive agressive way to identify me. Pray about your soul and the souls of those you try to bring from Christ's pure love and we will keep praying for you. You will post this we know so post also that we love you all ways and our love is shown best by making you be in charge of your choices. Our offer is still on the table about coming home and going to school of our choice. You could be such a witness for the power of choosing GODS PURPOSE to women if you have the courage to submit to HIS PLAN for you and we will help you come HOME. A family in partnership of faith will even host you if you do not want to live under my roof for the time. Your readers and you should see how accomdating we are being to you.


  1. re: "holiest of commandments"

    does Got Hard Dad somehow think "holy" (however he determines that) trumps "greatest" per Jesus himself? As in "37Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 38This is the first and great commandment.39And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. 40On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets."

    I don't know about Got Hard but I don't see that Jesus mentions anything about parents in there at all.

  2. Accommodating?

    By doing what? Emotionally blackmailing her into a shadow of the person she was created to be? What?

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. BTW, Ruth, just wondering if Got Hard speaks in all caps like that in real life or just in writing?

  5. Gosh, how can we turn away from someone WHO is so VERY adept at UTILIZING well-PLACED CaPiTalIZAtioN?

    Ruth, he doesn't get it and he never will.

    Darth Daddy? Those peals of laughter you hear? That's the Internet reading about how we "should see how accomdating (sic)" you are. You're about as accommodating as a hive of angry bees...

  6. So how does GothardDad explain all those OTHER Christian families leading happy servant lives outside of ATI?

  7. Well, this is pretty much what I expected.

    ~The Other Pam

  8. Ruth, I'm a frequent reader but lurker up to this point. Your recent posts have been so personal and breathtaking...I just want you to know that there are many out here that are applauding your strength and cheering you on (virtually!) on your journey.

    As for Dad's comments, there are so many ways it is so out of whack, but what really brings it down for me is this comment: "Speaking man to man you should try it and watch how your life opens." I can only speak for myself, but I have tried doing things the fundamentalist way (Not QF/Gothard, but same idea) and my life (and my mind, and my heart) was closed, closed, closed because of rules, fear, and anxiety. Now I have found a new path, and my life is more open and happy than ever. In fact, I haven't felt this close to God ever, even when I myself would say things that sounded so close to what he wrote: "we pray for them to find the strength to open themselves and give it to God."

    My transition from that way of thinking was hard, but so worth it. There is love everywhere, waiting for you to discover it. When you think for yourself and find your own path, you find it. It is just waiting for you.

    My point is, your Dad clearly doesn't know what closes and opens your life or your heart. But YOU know what does it. You can find it. You can be happy and find love and figure things out yourself. Thanks for writing so candidly and sharing your path.

  9. What I find so (sadly) hilarious is how these patriarchalist fathers don't realize that the more they defend themselves and condemn those who don't submit to their authority, the more they reveal how thoroughly self-serving their pet submission dogmas are. Basically, their "sheltering" game is to claim their own spiritual and legal rights in order to deny those same rights to their wives and children.

  10. Timely...

  11. "Your readers and you should see how accomdating we are being to you."

    That statement is simply breathtaking. He makes you an offer he knows you will be unable to accept, and then pins the responsibility of not accepting it on you. Brilliant.

    And here's another thing worth noting: Dad is very adept at utilizing the "honor your father and mother" command, yet seems not to have grasped the "provoke not your children to wrath" command, which is given directly to him.

    Ruth, I've followed your blog for some time, without commenting (maybe I commented once, I don't remember). But I have often prayed for you and your family. May our Heavenly Father draw you close, regardless of the actions of your earthly father.

  12. Darth DAddy,
    My children honor me by living their own lives. They honor me and their father by becoming adults who think and reason on their own. They also love God, attend church, and talk freely about their lives. Your children are burdened by the lies and deceit you have proffered them via the heresies preached by Bill Gothard. How does a unmarried man who lived with his mother till she died, have the knowledge and the reason to teach married couple and children the right way? He doesn't. He's a charlatan who has laughed all the way to the bank. Same as Doug Phillips. I feel sorry that you have the need to be uplifted in the same manner as Christ, because Dad, you aren't Christ, nor will you ever attain the self less love and compassion that he taught.

  13. Anonymous at 1:02 asked, "So how does GothardDad explain all those OTHER Christian families leading happy servant lives outside of ATI?"

    This is an important question. There are two things legalists struggle with: those outside the system who have success and those inside who do not. (Remember that Ruth's dad is in the second group. Note the debt comment. That's a measure of success in Dad's mind.) In order to deal with this dilemma, they create all kinds of rationalizations and measurement systems. They ignore the hypocrisy and the inconsistencies because they must find a way out of the dilemma.

    The sad thing is that none of this is about the Lord or faith or anything religious. Religion is simply a tool that enables control in the system Dad follows. Dad looks bad now and will continue looking bad until Ruth is brought back under his control. He hits her at a vulnerable time with these incredible words.

    This is a classic narcissist technique. He will not understand that we think he is being cruel. He actually believes this may work to solve his problem.

    I grieve that Ruth has to deal with him again and I wish she could just cut him off for good. On the other hand, she will be stronger if she can continue to see the truth and keep going forward. Maybe she will be able to help other siblings by keeping these lines open. But there is a significant cost.

    Ruth, many are praying for you. You are loveable and you are loved.

  14. Well, speaking of Ephesians, what about 6:4? "Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger..." (Other translations say, "Do not embitter your children" or "do not exasperarte" them.)

  15. I like the version that says: "fathers, do not be such assholes that your children find nothing in you to respect."

  16. Don't budge!
    And i totally second Sandra.

  17. I am so sorry Ruth! Ruth, I have been following your blog for a long time because I have a friend I feel I've basically lost to IBLP. I pray for her and try to stay present in her life so if she ever is ready to leave she will have a support net. But Recovering Grace is a website I've found to be full of wisdom and encouragement. You may already be aware of it? It was founded by ATI alumni who have left, and are now trying to heal. I just hate for you to feel alone.... there are so many others like you! At RG are tons of personal stories, and a link to a facebook group you could join that might really help you through this. These are caring young adults who are not focused on bitterness or vengefulness but healing and recovery. You don't have to feel damaged beyond repair. The love-filled, peace-filled lives many of these ATI ex-students have built brought me so much hope for my friend! I am praying for you! Reach out to them! Many of us on this blog can offer support, but we have not walked in your shoes like the contributors on RG. **Hugs**

  18. Sorry, here's the link

    Hang in there


  19. "To Michael Mock. The way I live was set before me by the HOLIEST OF HOLIES. GOD requires it for them that will enjoy eternity in HIS precense. My life is good."

    First of all, thank you for taking time to answer. I'm sure it isn't easy to have a bunch of hostile strangers making judgments about your lifestyle.

    What do you mean when you say your lifestyle was "set before you by the Holiest of Holies?" Did the Almighty drop by one afternoon and explain His model for holy marriages? If not, where did you first hear about the QF system? What persuaded you to try it?

    "What life do you have without trust in HIM?"

    You might be surprised, actually. My life is great. Let's take a look...

    "I have followed a program of faith to be debtless this makes me happy."

    We are also essentially debtless, with the exception of a mortgage which will be paid off in a few more years. In our case it isn't anything to do with a program of faith, though - just sensible financial planning.

    I have a steady job that offers good pay and excellent benefits, and for the most part it's work that I really enjoy. That, I'd have to admit, is at least partly luck - though I suppose it could also be seen as a sign of God's favor.

    "My spirit is replenished by the walk I have with my Savior. I have a holy, GOD fearing wife sanctioned by the covenants of the Bible who has walked with me for most of my life. We know no divorce because we believe in the covenant of marriage therefore I am fulfilled and happy. Our children living in our honor are happy."

    You know, I've heard a lot of husbands describe the wives they love, but I think this is the first time I've ever heard "holy" leading the description. Not that there's anything wrong with that, I guess, it's just that to me as an outsider it sounds weirdly impersonal. It sounds like the important things about your wife aren't who she is or what she does, but rather that she's holy and bound to you in a covenant. It doesn't tell me anything at all about what she's like.

    For myself... I have a wonderful marriage to a positively incredible wife. Like you, we know no divorce (if you mean that the way I think you mean it), because we love and support each other so that being together makes each of us better. I love her pragmatism and her enthusiasm and her quirky sense of humor. I love that she introduces me to experiences I would never have found on my own, and I love doing the same for her. I love the way she works with our boys, and her unwavering determination to Do The Right Thing. I love that she's active enough to enjoy camping and hiking and climbing and running. I love her because she's her.

  20. "The very small sadness we feel is about 'Ruth' and our son who chose this life of worldiness and they were raised in the same way as the kids who stayed and returned to us whole so we keep praying that they too will return to live God's promise."

    ...And this is part of why your lifestyle seems so strange to me. We have two boys, and I love them both dearly, but I expect them to go out and live their own lives, make their own mistakes, and find their own ways in the world. I don't expect them to do things the way I would do them, because they are not me.

    By the time they're Ruth's age, I fully expect them to be living on their own as independent adults. I won't be averse to helping them out, but I want them to be independent - and, it should go without saying, I'd want that for them if they been girls, too. No doubt they'll have some difficulties; of course they will. That's part of life, and it's how people learn and grow.

    "Quiverful isn't a lifestyle for those who pray upon the scripture which is why it will never be for everyone."

    I'm sorry, I really don't understand what you're saying here. Did you mean that Quiverful is a lifestyle for those who pray? Or did you mean that it isn't a lifestyle for those who prey upon the scripture?

    "Choosing to allow God to be in control of the opening and closing of the womb is a calling that you respond to with right spirit and heart or one that you ignore because of your own desires and needs which don't coincide with the Bible."

    Have you ever considered that maybe the Almighty doesn't extend that call to everyone? That maybe it's something He wanted for you, but not for everyone else - and maybe not even all of your children?

    The problem with one-size-fits-all answers is that we don't have one-size people, let alone one-size questions. People are different.

    "We don't judge others for not having the faith to walk in the LORDS TRUST but we pray for them to find the strength to open themselves and give it to GOD."

    Did you listen to yourself when you said this? Of course you judge people. You judge them as lacking in faith, which - given the great many Christians I know who don't follow the QF lifestyle - is simply laughable. You just judged everyone outside of Quiverful as unable or unwilling to walk in the Lord's Trust - and you're simply wrong about that.

    "Speaking man to man you should try it and watch how your life opens."

    What, specifically, are you asking me to try? Praying? Reading the Bible? I've done those things. Embracing the QF view of God and the world? Admittedly, I don't understand it completely, but what I've seen so far bears no resemblance whatsoever to the God I was raised to adore. That wouldn't be something I could just try on, like a new shirt.

    "Man and woman were created different for HIS PURPOSES and you fight still to be equals in yolk. Purpose to find HIS PURPOSE."

    Um, what? I presume you meant "yoke" instead of "yolk", but I'm still confused. In the scripture, isn't being unequally yoked supposed to be a bad thing? Isn't being equally yoked something we're supposed to be doing?

    And I really don't understand what "Purpose to find HIS PURPOSE" is supposed to mean. Maybe you think I should seek God's Purpose for my life? If so, fair enough. But I'm pretty sure that if there is a God, and He has some purpose for me, it isn't the same purpose He has for you.

  21. "You could be such a witness for the power of choosing GODS PURPOSE to women if you have the courage to submit to HIS PLAN for you and we will help you come HOME."

    Circular reasoning is circular. Yes, of course Ruth could be a witness for your lifestyle if she chose to embrace your lifestyle, but she doesn't. You are basically trying to tell her that coming home is a good thing by telling her that if she comes home she can tell other people it's a good thing. Gentle hint, if you want Ruth to come home you might want to tell her what's in it for her, and do so in terms that actually look like a benefit to her. Telling Ruth that if she comes home she can be treated like a repentant Magdalene, sent to a college that offers the same crappy education she got growing up, and continue to be a servant to her parents is not making home look good to her OR representing your lifestyle well to anyone reading this.

    Shorter version. The stuff you think is a feature? It's a bug.

  22. Ruth, this is a trap. He is trying to lure you back in. I don't care how bad things get for you, do not move back in with them. They will never change. I have a spare room that I'd let you have rent free before letting you go back to them with no other options. You have a lot of other supporters out here who feel the same way, I'm sure.
    ~Dawn B.

  23. Gotharddad is among the worst of Bible thumpers taking things out of context. Honor does not mean "being under authority" as in Gothard. It means to consider to give consideration to. Ruth does that. Gothard and his followers twist it to be obey and live under. That isn't honor that is oppression.

  24. I see daddy hasn't accommodated himself with a dictionary or grammar rules book yet! How does this guy who can't manage fairly elementary spelling or grammar think he's able to understand the Bible? Dear dumb dumb daddy, the first & great commandment and the second on which all of the law hangs are clearly spelled out in scripture by Jesus. They are NOT "honor your parents". Get a clue.

  25. I'm sorry, I know I posted a large chunk of text already, but I want to come back to something:

    "The very small sadness we feel is about 'Ruth' and our son who chose this life of worldiness and they were raised in the same way as the kids who stayed and returned to us whole so we keep praying that they too will return to live God's promise."

    Let me see if I have this straight:

    1. All of your children were raised in the same way.

    2. Two of your children, out of... at least five? ...have left the QF lifestyle.

    3. Gothard's website says that he offers "seven Biblical, non-optional principles of life which, when followed, will result in harmonious relationships in all areas of life."

    In light of points 1 and 2, I don't see how I can possibly believe point 3. If two of your children are basically estranged - despite growing up fully immersed in the Gothard/QF lifestyle - then clearly his teachings aren't resulting in "harmonious relationships in all areas of life." In fact, it makes me wonder if the opposite isn't true. All the families I know are outside QF, and several have divorced parents... but the vast majority of the kids are not estranged from their parents.

    You may of course argue that the failing isn't Gothard's, Quiverful's, or yours... but again, you raised your kids in that environment. So what went wrong?

  26. I would like to respond to Ruth's father once more, if I may. Jesus was very clear about the holiest of commandments. The first: to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, and strength. The second: to love others as much as we love ourselves. To any person professing to be a believer, that love is the identifying factor. That love is how people know that we are followers of Christ.

    If we do not have love, we are a gong, a clanging cymbal.

    So now I speak as much to Ruth's father as I do to myself. One day, we will be face to face with God. He will not ask us if our spouse sinned, or if our children made all the right choices, of if our friends were obedient to His word. That is between them and Him. He will, however, look at our lives, what we did with the challenges we were faced with, and most importantly, into our hearts to judge our motives. That is where all this leads.

    It sounds like you are closer to a place where you could freely let Ruth go. I encourage you to do this. Even if you view her as a disappointment or a rebellious child, you can look at the father of the prodigal son as your guide for how to proceed from this point. She wishes to go, so allow her to leave. Give her any inheritance she is due. Give her your blessing. And then wait. She may come back; she may not. She may decide that it is healthiest for her to have very little contact while she heals.

    You can not be faulted for kindness, if you choose to be kind. You won't have to answer to God for extending grace and love to your children. This is the only possibility if you hope to have a relationship with Ruth one day.

    I am thankful that you are willing to talk to us.


  27. I'm about as blown away at your Dad's wanton disregard for being even close to honest about true Scriptural commandments & priorities as I often am at my own dad's behavior on similar subjects. We weren't even close to QF, although I think my dad always wished he knew how to be a fundamentalist and just wasn't smart enough to pull it off in anything but the anger & unintelligible rants.

  28. As an atheist (ex-evangelical) I feel like I am watching a tennis match w/an imaginary tennis ball. Each player keeps insisting that THEY are hitting the ball and the other person is missing it. Except there's no ball. You guys can argue scriptures over and over again, and it will not do a h good because it is all based on your interpretation of your imaginary friend.

    I know I'll get heat on that from both sides, but please know, Ruth, that I very much identify with your struggle having been sucked in for several years into evangelical Christianity under the "discipleship" of a cult leader. It took years for me to deprogram

  29. Srsly Deanna, you sound almost as delusional as Ruth's dad. (Except not mean.) how do you know what God's going to say to people after they die? Have you died and experienced it yourself? Eye-witness accounts? *SMH* I will give you props for not being a jerk, but you both sound alike in that you speak like you know the mind of "god."

  30. I think no matter what any of you or I say, he is not going to get it.

    Some above statements were eloquent, well thought out,and of sound scriptural interpetation.

    Unfortunatly, he is so bound by his own lies,and false beliefs it is like throwing pearls to the swine.

    You hear that Darthdaddy? SWINE. Yup, you pretty much own in that department.

  31. @Michael Mock--What I find most disturbing is that her father only feels a "very small sadness". If I were estranged from my children it would cause me indescribable sadness. I'm not sure how I could live with it if I were at all in the wrong, or could do anything to make them a part of my life again.

    Just remember, Ruth, there are people out there who love and support you, and who have gone through the same/similar struggles. I don't understand the "why," but I can say it's not your fault.

  32. Control can never be a substitute for love. I am pretty sure that wasn't in the curriculum though.

    Cindy@Baptist Taliban and Beyond

  33. There is a reason that "Mock" rhymes with "ROCK!!!" Which you do, sir. Extremely well stated.

  34. Ruth,

    I just came across your blog through another blog I've been a faithful reader of for almost 2 years. I come bearing pom-poms, I love to encourage others on this, sometimes harsh road, of leaving religion behind and embracing grace, in all its scandal! Our Heavenly Father has you Ruth, His Everlasting Arms are beneath you and I pray you feel their presence today.

    I won't begin to harp on your dad or anything he says, it's too big a ship to battle myself. I did want to say that my favorite parable Jesus told is found in Luke 15, of the lost son. Upon the sons return home, his father did not have any reprimands, lists or specifications of him. The father didn't even respond to the boys apology, he simply grabbed the best robe in the house and started the party. Our Heavenly Father is a good Father who loves you very much Ruth. Even in the midst of struggle and doubt.

    And I want to end with something I haven't been able to get off my heart since I read this post yesterday.......Our Heavenly Father was very accomdating to us when He sent His only Son Jesus Christ to live in front of us as a perfect replica of God the Father and then die a horrific death as He became sin so that the bridge was built between us and Him. A bridge we broke down and out of His compassionate love, a bridge He built so we may live. Jesus, the very Son of God did not think being God was anything to be grapsed, He simply did what He came to do. He accomodated us in the biggest way. Full of grace and truth the Word became flesh. Seek that Ruth. He is faithful and merciful to us all, including every member of your family. Those who have stayed, as well as those who have left. Remember, Peter, he denied Christ 3 times......but the forgiveness was perfect, the love was deep, and the grace given to him (and each one of us) is still scandalous to this day.

    Praying for you my sister in Christ. Love you!
    Rebekah Grace

  35. Yes, God is working through you to show us the other side- the side where a man sets himself up as God and fails. A side where a man tells his family to seek his will instead of seeking God's will, to believe that his version of "love" for his children is the same as God's version of love, that his willingness to begrudgingly accept his "prodigal" (in his eyes) daughter home in any way reflects God's earnest seeking and longing to accept His children with open arms and a declaration to bring shoes, a robe, a ring, and throw a celebration. Actually, there is a character in the Bible who said he would be like the most high God. GothardDad, I think you know how that one turned out. Even if we set aside the New Testament teaching of grace and only focus on the God of the Old Testment, that is the same God of whom Jonah said, " I knew that thou art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest thee of the evil"- Basically, I KNEW you were going to let them off the hook because that is the kind of God that you are. In trying to set yourself up in the place of God in Ruth's life you have driven her away because her view of her Father is stained by your representation. How can she believe in God's love, his desire for her fellowship, his acceptance of her just as she is when you have shown her only a possive type of love that insists she be only what you forsee for her? Shame on you for being such a poor representation of our Father's love.

    Ruth, I heard this song this morning and immediately thought of you and Darth Daddy. I wish you had known this kind of love that is reflective of the Father's love for you.
    "Let me tell you a secret about a father's love,
    A secret that my daddy said was just between us.
    You see Daddies don't just love their children every now and then.
    It's a love without end, amen, it's a love without end, amen."

    You see GothardDad, "Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never faileth".

    I freely admit that there are beams in my own eye; I don't need to be worried about the splinter in someone else's, but it breaks my heart when someone who is supposed to love his daughter steals from her the most important thing in life, a personal relationship with God by insisting that she needs to go through him when God has clearly said, "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." No human intercessor needed.

  36. There is something terribly wrong with this man. Others have already noted some of the reasons that this is apparent.

    "Very small sadness"? Nice, real nice. I can't think of a single issue that I would allow to alienate me from my children, but if that was ever, heaven forbid, to happen, their father and I would feel far more than a "very small sadness". What an incredibly inadequate parent DarthDad is, and that's the nicest thing I can think of to say about him.

    Ruth, honey, you just stay the course. He's trying to set a trap for you. He speaks with no authority other than what he's made up in his own mind, and he certainly doesn't speak for God. You are loved for who you are by many, and your support is greater than you can imagine.

  37. Seriously, Darth Daddy, if you want anyone to take you seriously then stop using those Biblish-looking RANDOM capitalizations. It's one thing to have those in the Bible in an attempt to clarify which root words are being translated in the sentence, it's another to use it on the internet. It makes you look really, really, really dumb.

    Ruth, sending virtual chocolate your way!


  38. Dear Dad,

    Your child is now an adult. Treat her (and any other adult children you may have) as such and let her make her own choices (yes, and mistakes). Give her LOVE. Not love only if she believes as you do. I'm a parent, too, and know how hard it is to let go and let your children "grow up." There is no Umbrella of Authority in the Bible. THAT is the false message here. Read your Bible yourself and tune into the Lord and tune out Mr. Gothards. What the heck does a childless, single man know about marriage or raising children? Is he a new messiah? I don't think so. Have you never read the story of the prodigal son? Or does that only mean son and not "child."??

    Sad to see you so intent on being "right" and not on being a Dad. I am sincerely praying for all of your family.

  39. Dad is an idiot, and 'gothard' must be too -- if either of them think that "honour" your father and mother means "do anything they say, no matter what it is, for the rest of your life, even if they are abusive".

    To honour abusive parents involves having good boundaries, limits and distance... while treating them with as much interpersonal courtesy as possible, given the circumstances. Many abusive parents make any level of courtesy, or even contact impossible. In this case, "honour" prefers no-contact, over discourtesy.

  40. Ruth is "whole" because she is a person. She may, indeed, also be a sinner (if you subscribe to the 'we are all sinners' line of thought). However, by that line of thought, you, too, are a sinner, and so am I... so what difference does it make to be mentioning it?

    Your "expectations" have nothing to do with Ruth's life or her 'wholeness'. Your feelings about your unmet expectaions are your own business. I suggest you deal with them like a mature adult rather than blaming other people for not doing what you think they should.

  41. Ruth's Dad,
    I homeschooled my children for a short time and met quiverful parent's like you that looked down their noses on my family. I have 4 children, I am debt free. I live a godly life, I LOVE MY HUSBAND AND CHILDREN. My husband IS an example of a godly man. My children honor their parents but have been taught to be free to grow and express their points of view in a proper way. My 17 yr old daughter while permitted to date has made a CHOICE ON HER OWN NOT TO DATE IN HIGH SCHOOL. They have been raised to store scripture in their hearts: true scripture from the BIBLE. Not the words of a man.

  42. If you think that you get in good with God for eternity by following a lifestyle, even a good lifestle, you need to re-read the gospel... and your lifestyle is not (in any plausible way) a good lifestyle. Good lives involve the fruit of the spirit. Bad lives show malice, pride and vindictiveness.

  43. Oh, and it's perposterous to imagine that you know more about God's 'PLAN' for Ruth than she does.

  44. your dad sure is a piece of work, isn't he?


  45. Hey Darth Daddy,
    You see that paypal link on the sidebar? You really wanna' show your support for Ruth, start there. Your daughter is doing the do, so to speak, so get off your high horse and do your part by doing what most dads do. Pitch in and help your child realize her dreams without strings!
    Man, listen to me here. My daughter fell into a really bad relationship and ended up dropping out of university. She gave up and drank herself out of the pain. Your daughter is doing her damndest to make something of herself and you sit her and condemn her. Man up! Put your money where your faith and mouth are.

    Ruth, honey! I put ten bucks in your donation/tip jar. I'm glad you put it back up as I requested because, speaking as a daddy and human being, you rock and deserve the support. Wish I could give more.

  46. Ruth, please research Narcissistic Personality Disorder (your father) and co-dependency (your mother) and talk to your therapist about it. No doubt he or she can point you to resources which help adult children who have had to endure growing up with such parents. It'll change your life.

  47. Very small sadness?? Way to be an example of a loving Christian patriarch and set an example to the heathens, jerk.

    Ruth-- hang in there. Pretty much everybody goes through rough patches in life; you're just going through them without the support system that most of us have to bail us out. The fact that your family has cut you out of their lives because you wanted to do something different is their failure, not yours.

  48. Ruth, Have you ever thought that God is punishing your father because he has a rebellious daughter? I think that you are coming out of this situation with a much healthier life and you are learning and growing. You have a community of people who love and support your decisions and want to see you succeed.

    On a side note, think of God as a friend, not a father. According to the Bible, He wants to get to know you as a friend. Would you think that a friend is punishing you for your lifestyle? I don't think so. God is not punishing you. He loves you. He loves you so much that while you were still a sinner, He sent His son to die for you so that you do not need to bear your sins any longer. God does not condemn you. He loves you.

  49. Father Ruth: My parents are conservative.
    I dated a guy they didn't like. We broke up during freshman year of college, then ran into each other about 3 years later. arents were unhappy. For years.But because they love me no matter what, we were still pretty cool with each other. They didn't approve, but they didn't harp on it; the only time it became an issue was when we were going to big family events. All of my relatives are conservative.
    After a few years of dating, the guy & I broke up.
    I was miserable. I tried to keep going. I tried & tried but even my parents could see that a spark was gone.
    The boy & I ran into each other AGAIN (God's will?); after a few months we began dating again.
    This time, something changed: my parents realized that, despite their not liking this guy, it was possible that he was the ONE for me. They realized they might be wrong. He might really be the one God had for me.
    Eventually, they apologized for having judged him. Because they are true Christians & amazing parents, they realized they'd been wrong. They'd let their judgment - not wanting a long-haired, pierced freak as a son-in-law - get in the way of what was truly best for me.
    They sat him down & sincerely apologized for judging him.
    We've been married now for 10 years now. We're perfect for each other; my parents love him.
    I told you this b/c you are not always right. My parents are the godliest people I know. They had unconditional love for me & allowed that love to inform their decisions: they were humble enough to realize they were wrong.
    They humbled themselves to apologize to my husband for judging him, that is what Christians do. After 11 years, my father still gets teary-eyed when he talks about how wrong he was to judge my husband way back when.

    Father Ruth, having children is a risk. You can't control them. You do your best but the bottom line is, they will go their own way. They are separate people from you.
    Has God ever stopped loving you? Even while you are being judgmental, and shunning your daughter (who you brought into the world, by choice) and hurting her by denying your love, God still loves you. He loves you unconditionally.

    He's doing it because he wants you to do the same. Accept your daughter. Not as you want her to be, but who she is. Let her visit. Let her see her siblings who she loves and who love her. Don't preach. don't judge. Just remember that she's your daughter. Hug her. Let your wife call her and talk for hours without listening in. Let her cry on your shoulder for her broken heart without thinking it's her "just desserts." Let her be hurt and broken without blaming her.

    Just love her. Love her with the love God has given you. That is your commandment from the God who loves you just as he expects you to love Ruth.

    I challenge you::sit and think of God's love for you. Think of every single horrible thing you've done in your life. Really think about it. Then think about how God still loves you, how he would still wrap his arms around you in his perfect and unconditional love. How he would call the rest of his flock in and then go out looking for you, his one lost sheep. How, even if it was your fault for wandering away from the flock, no matter what, the shepherd will not sleep until he has that one lost sheep in his arms. The first thing he would do would not be to lecture the sheep, but to cry in relief, to grab the lost sheep in his arms, put his face into the lost sheep's fur, crying with pure love 7 relief.

    That is the love God has for you.

    it's the love he asks you to have for your daughter.

  50. To Ruth's father: Christianity teaches that rejection of Jesus as Savior is the only thing that keeps people from Heaven. It has nothing to do with whether a child perfectly obeys his/her earthly father.

    Ruth is teetering about belief in God (the last I remember) because of your misuse of the Bible. That's got to be a heavy burden to carry.

    Here's my advice for you: Leave your IBLP/ATI books at home and go to speak to a conservative, caring, male pastor of a Lutheran Church Missouri Synod church about how Gothardism teaches and how Christ taught.

    Just get a second opinion from a man of God who has been raised and raises others to rely on Jesus, not on his own works. Please consider this.


  51. By some reason your dad insists he knows better than you what's best for you. That's quite preposterous of him. You are a responsible grown-up person. It's clear to me that your dad doesn't know you at all.

  52. Some choice--It sounds like your dad only has one 'acceptable' life in mind for you. Acommodating my ass... he won't let you talk to your family and he's ranting on your blog. Really loving people don't emotionally manipulate others, and they respect their children's choices even when they disagree. It sounds like your dad is more into controlling you than having a respectful relationship with you.

    It looks like you've come a really long way from when you started posting! It takes a lot of guts to move out, make a life, and stand up to your dad. Keep hanging on! Hoping for the best for you.

  53. Mr.X,

    "Ruth" IS honoring you. She is being very kind to you and your wife and has not treated you with the disgust that so many of us think you deserve.

    Furthermore, the commandment of honoring your father and mother does not translate into doing whatever they tell you to do when you are an adult. At some point, the walk with Christ becomes our own and not someone else's, not our parents' and not our spouses.'

    As a mother of eight, five of which have reached adulthood, I have learned that at some point, I am finished raising my children as an authority over them....and that it isn't when they marry. I am their mentor, their counselor, their support, but I do not decide things for them anymore. I've taught them to do that for themselves and now, they must.

    It might behoove you to consider this and decide what is more important; letting go of your iron rule or your relationship with Ruth?

  54. I really just want to say that if there is a God, I doubt his love in conditional in the way your father seems to skew it!.

    That is not the biblical truth, its a warped opinion!

    Know you have a lot of support, and your father really has no power here!

  55. "The very small sadness we feel is about 'Ruth' and our son who chose this life of worldiness and they were raised in the same way as the kids who stayed and returned to us whole so we keep praying that they too will return to live God's promise."
    That strikes me as a really selfish statement. As a loving parent, most would be broken-hearted to see their children doing something they considered harmful, but this is really just about the selfishness of being "right", being "holy" and having an image to those of the community of QF/ATI.
    Additionally, I like the ideas of many here who say to give her the inheritance that she deserves according to your Bible, according to the story of the prodigal or even according to the verses that ATI picks and chooses...shouldn't Ruth be getting a house and riches from her debt-free parents, since house and riches are the inheritance of "Fathers" (See Proverbs 19:14 - haha I know DD will get hung up on the second part about godly wives being from Jehovah, tho' he thinks he is resp for that too!)
    If you had done your job to the same degree that you require of your daughter, she wouldn't be struggling to be successful...
    Just a thought, Perhaps the failure is on the part of the father?? Perhaps you are not as "happy" and "living according to the promise" as you thought.

    X-ATI pilot daughter

  56. "Man and woman were created different for HIS PURPOSES and you fight still to be equals in yolk."

    Equals in yolk:

    Equals in yoke:

    I have a pretty hard time taking anyone who can't tell the difference between a sack of vitamins and the gear for a carthorse seriously.

    Also, the very meaning of the word "yoke" implies partnership and teamwork rather than a struggle for equality:

    In short, Ruth's dad, bad choice of a metaphor, and bad choice of spelling.

  57. Dear Ruth,
    Wow, what a journey you're on. You knew what you needed to do when you ran away to your neighbors. I hope you will persevere in your journey. My suggestion to you is to not respond to your father, by doing so you are giving him what he wants, power. I know it's hard to cut yourself off, but for now it seems you need to create a space so you can grow. Look to those who support you in positive ways, one step at a time and you will be successful.
    Love one another.

  58. To Ruth's Dad, if Ruth ever went back home, I highly doubt that she would ever see the light of day and freedom again. She would become your servant, someone else's servant, and her own soul, spirit, and light would die out. She'd become....well, like your WIFE. You know what you did to her to turn her into a mother that can't even follow her motherly instinct, which is to protect her children from harm. You took that away from her strategically and methodically. You have no idea how much you sicken me to the core of my being as a mother. There is no way that you will ever convince me that you have the best interests of Ruth or even your other children in mind. IMO, your interest is to yourself and some business interest in the Gothard school of h*ll. You constantly threaten people with h*ll, yet living with you under your "umbrella of protection" is the highest form of hell that there could ever be. I was raised a Christian my whole life, but I now hold different thoughts on different things. One thing that I believe in 100% is that we have one soul and multiple lives, and we come back to our journey on this earth when we have new lessons to learn, and/or karma to work out. You're going to have some major karma to work out in your next will work on exactly "why" you had to enslave other people's spirit and souls in order to uplift your own. Everything that you have done, you justify as doing "for God." You've done for YOURSELF, and no one else. You've caused your family grief, pain, shame, low/no self-esteem...basically, you've wiped out their strength so that you alone can be God and King in your own self-made kingdom. Alas, you're not the only one...but you're the one I'm writing about now. Ruth is a good, strong, young woman. I know it's killing you that your plan let one slip through the cracks....this is what this is about. I used to be angry at you when Ruth first started writing this blog...I couldn't believe that such arrogance, such hypocricy, such abuse could exists - all sanctioned/justified by "following God's plan". Now, after being away for over a year from the RR blog, I just am sickened how you've not changed...instead I see your poor daughter Rachel thrown out of the house and your wife forbidden to speak to her. What kind of father and/or husband are you??? What will it take for you to gain control of yourself as a human being, APART from Gothard??? It has just occurred to me that you are not far from the fictional character of Darth Vader who has totally embraced the Dark Side, and Emperor Palpatine is Gothard. THAT is fiction, YOU and Gothard are REAL....continuing to wreck havoc in people's lives and justifying your ways by bringing "God" into the equation. Why can't you see that???? I don't know. I just hope that whatever higher power is up there/out there intervenes and gets your children out of the bondage you hold them in...and frees them one by one. Your wife and you...well, you can look back at all the years of torture & hell that you inflicted on your children...and YOU, specifically, can look back at the years of torture & hell that you inflicted on EVERYONE associated with you, the dearest ones, which is your family. I still tell my children how Ruth made the funeral luncheon at age 9 all by herself. This was when her grandmother (mother's mom) passed away. What kind of parents leave a 9 year-old child by themselves to begin with, much less expect that a 9 year-old child can/should prepare food for a crowd??? Can you even see the insanity of your ways??? I could go on and on...I know that everything I said will go in one ear and out the other, but at least I got a little bit off my chest.

  59. Dear Ruth, I concur with a poster above who said that your dad is trying to set a trap. That is 100% accurate. Traps are set in a conniving way, in a very subtle, delicate way...until their victim falls into it and is STUCK!!! Trust me, if you EVER fall into that trap, it is unlikely that you will ever get out. Take a good look at your mom and how she was methodically stripped of her own motherly instincts to nurture and protect her children from harm. That should be proof enough of what your dad has in mind not only for you, but for your other siblings as well. Remain the course, Ruth. Follow your heart and you will not steer wrong. Much love and ((hugs)).

  60. "...our love is shown best by making you be in charge of your choices."

    That sums it up right there.

    Ruth, your family can't grant you the power of choice or "make you" be in charge of your choices. You are already 100% in charge of your choices. That's your human birthright. It is not theirs to grant or deny. The fact that he even phrased it this way shows he is utterly unable to imagine giving up his idea of control.

    Be strong. I have so much admiration for the strength and grace you show here.

  61. Ruth, I only learned of your blog recently so I'm late to the "party" but your Dad's post is very telling. To be honest I saw it as the usual ramblings of those who succumb to religious extremism. There's nothing wrong with being religious, in fact I think its a good thing. But, at a certain point it becomes too much and your parents are an example of that. His ramblings show that he does not read the bible without the influence of Gothard.... The Bible sanctions divorce and even shows that humans are allowed faults and shouldn't be rejected.

    A woman I know who became a devout Orthodox Jew in her adulthood had a problem she sought help from her Rabbi about. She didn't want to break the "honor thy mother and father" commandment. Her upbringing was rather chaotic and somewhat abusive. The Orthodox Rabbi told her that Hallmark was the answer. He said that there is a minimum for honoring one's parents and that minimum can be met by sending them a card on major holidays and birthdays. You need not even call or text! But, by sending the card you are remembering them and the good things that they might have done for you in addition to the abuse. Therefore you are fulfilling the commandment and being a commandment following child.

    GOod luck with your life's endeavors. May you serve as an example to other young men and women who are trapped at home quivering in fear of G-d and their parents.


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