January 17, 2011

TESTIMONY OF ROBIN POLIN

FIGHTING FOR HER FREEDOM TO BELIEVE

Like many of us who give our testimonies on this website, Robin grew up in a Jewish home in Tulsa, Oklahoma.  She accepted Yeshua as her Messiah and Savior when she was a teenager. When she turned 18 years of age, her parents declared her mentally incompetent before a court judge, but she fought and won her case.  Her testimony is on her videos, along with clip from the TV news.  Today Robin is best known for her role as an evangelist to Deaf Jews.






This is a clip of the big news about Robin's court case as it appeared on the television screen.  Jay Sekulow was the lawyer at the time.



  




Robin speaks about her parents reaction to the news that she accepted Jesus as her savior... 

   




And here is Robin's testimony during Moshe Rosen's memorial.  Moshe was the founder of Jews for Jesus, an organization that Robin was very much involved in.


Robin with Jews for Jesus
  



Here is Robin's testimony in her own words...

I was raised in a Jewish home after being born deaf. My deafness was caused by German measles during my mom's pregnancy. I attended Shabbat school class at synagogue when I was 5 years old. In class there was no interpreter, which caused me to be bored and unhappy. So I quit going there. However, my family and I often attended my synagogue for the special holidays like New Year's, Yom Kippur, Hanukkah and Passover annually. I was never had a "Bat Mitzvah", but my sisters and brother had their Bar/Bat Mitzvahs.

When I was 7-years old, my mother and I were driving home. Looking out the window, I saw a church and wondered to myself why there was a cross above the roof. What about the synagogue? It didn't have a cross on its building. I didn't ask my mother "why?" at the time. Then one Sunday morning I woke up and had nothing to do, so I decided to turn on the TV. I saw people in a church talking about this man who hung on the cross.  My thoughts were that this man was a good man, though still a stranger to me.

In my school, a deaf classmate who already had become a Christian explained to the rest of us 6th graders in elementary school about being baptized. My teacher, a Catholic, interrupted my deaf classmate's explanation for she knew I was a Jew and did not want me to listen to her story.  When I was 12-years old, my good friend's deaf pastor and wife visited our house for dinner one Saturday evening. They asked my parents, "Can Robin go with us to the skating party after church?" My parents just said to them "NO." I was very embarrassed at this, but I just kept eating and tried not to pay attention to them. My parents would make me so nervous.  Two girls from the church shortly after that came to visit me at my home. My mother told me to say,” No, I can't go to the church with you because I am Jewish." So I told the girls what my mother told me to say. They respected my words and left. They prayed silently in their hearts for my salvation.

God continued to put more people in my life in order to draw me to himself. When I was 13, I was a member of Fire Camp Girls. Before supper, all the girls and leaders prayed for the blessing of the food. I noticed that they all bowed their heads to pray. It caused me to be embarrassed because my family never used to bow their heads when praying at meals- it was new to me. Later, one of the leaders asked me to be involved in the bible study group on Sunday morning. I was alone in the supper room and saw through the window their replied, "No, I am Jewish and do not believe in Jesus." I cried and yelled to God and asked "Why must I be left alone by everyone in the Bible study group? Why am I Jewish and told not to believe in the church or the Bible?" Then when I was 14-years old, I had a strange and disturbing dream one night. On the orange desert my dry skeleton lay- only my eyes were alive. It seemed this was after my death. This dream stayed with me and caused me to be so worried about where I would go after my death. There was nothing to reveal the answer to my question. I was restless in my bed at night for at least a week.

I found myself searching for the truth of God and was unhappy in my life with my Jewishness. I had hoped that my Jewishness alone would make me successful and happy, but it failed. I asked my mom what she believed about heaven and hell. She said that all people in the world can go to heaven. I asked my sister and father what they thought, and they said that good people can go to heaven and bad people go to hell. Privately, I disagreed with their beliefs, but I knew there was "truth" somewhere; I would find it later.

In high school I used to watch my deaf classmate who was a fine Christian and loved the Lord Jesus Christ. She was joyful and smiled all the time. It caused me to wonder why she smiled and had joy all the time, seeming to have few troubles. I was curious and asked her questions about Jesus and her beliefs one day during the lunch hour. She loaned me a bible and talked to me about Jesus while I watched out for the teachers around me. I brought the bible home with me and read it in my living room. My mom saw me reading the bible and asked who it belonged to. I told her, "my deaf classmate". It caused her to be very upset when she learned that I was exposed to the Gospel in my high school.

My mother called my teachers and explained to them what I had been hearing from my deaf classmates. She wanted my teachers to rebuke my deaf classmates and instruct them not to talk with me about Jesus because I am Jewish. I got very upset with my mother. I told my teachers that my desire was to learn more about Jesus. But my teachers warned me that if the school got into trouble for allowing students to talk about Jesus those parents could sue the school. I replied that no matter how they feel, each person is free to talk about religious beliefs and that is their own business. After this happened, some of the deaf students started keeping away from me. A few months later, I became determined to talk to my deaf believer friends about the issues in the Bible while keeping watch out for the teachers so I wouldn't get in trouble.

I tried to understand the Bible, but it was not working. I was thinking about what to do. I got a new idea about visiting the deaf pastor after school. I made an appointment for meeting with him after school. I was driving there feeling so afraid of what my parents would do if they found out I was going to visit him. Anyways I figured I should be courageous enough on my own at 17-years old to go visit him. I asked him to explain the Bible. We talked for one hour.

I learned that Jews and Goyim are equal in God's eyes according to the Bible saying, Romans 3:9-12. So are we Jews better than others? No! We have already said that both Jews and those who are not Jews are guilty of sins. As the Scriptures say: "There is no one who does what is right, not even one. There is no one who understands. There is no one who looks to God for help. All have turned away. Together, everyone has become useless. There is no one who does anything good; there is not even one."

A few weeks later, the pastor shared with me where I would go after I died. He said that I would go to hell without Jesus. He also shared with me the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecies about Jesus in the New Testament. This evidenced Jesus' truth to me. So I realized that I am a sinner and the worthlessness of being Jewish, but I was so happy that Jesus was the Messiah and could save me from hell. So then I prayed to receive Jesus as my personal saviour. After that, I was so joyful in my heart- wow! I thank God that He sent His son Jesus into the world to die on the cross and forgive us of our sins. I was in a hurry to get home. My mother asked me where I was. I said I went to see the deaf pastor. She asked, "For what?" I said that we talked about Jesus. My mother got really upset and called the deaf pastor telling him not to talk to me about Jesus.

I continued to attend the deaf pastor's house after school and did not tell my parents where I was. I have been learning God's word ever since I became a believer. One day I asked my deaf pastor where the deaf missionaries to the Jewish people in America were. He said there are no missionaries to the deaf Jewish people in America. I became disappointed because I felt a burden for the deaf Jewish people and did not want them to go to hell without Jesus. So I decided to surrender to God and be a missionary to deaf Jews.

The time came to tell my parents about my decision with six weeks left before my high school graduation in May 1983. My high school teacher had given me an application for a scholarship. I wanted to go to Bible College, but my parents wanted me to be a computer programmer and go to East Central University or Gallaudet University. So I drove to my best friend's place of work after school one day and talked to her about how I felt God's calling me to be a missionary and go to Bible college. So we gathered to pray as we knew it would be very hard for this to go through my unsaved Jewish parents. So I went home and prayed hard for an hour before writing a note to my parents about my goal of going to Bible College.

I confronted my parents with the note and saw their expression become one of anger when they heard what I had to say. My dad's temper flared and he took away my car keys, Closed Captioning, and TDD (Telephone Device for the Deaf) from me. They were upset because I believed in Jesus.

A few weeks later, my father decided he was fed up with me because I refused to change my mind and return to Judaism. He wrote to me, "You must make up your mind to either follow your parents and the Ten Commandments or follow Jesus and leave home." I chose to follow Jesus and to leave home. My father grabbed my purse and I stopped him, but he hit my mouth. He closed his room door. So I left and went to the store to place an emergency call to my best friend, but that didn't really help. But I prayed to God and let God guide me on His path.

I decided to go back home and call my deaf friend. We went out into our neighborhood to babysit. Somehow it was God's miraculous moving in me to see the sign. My best friend heard that I tried to call him but there was no answer. So my best friend and other friend drove around my house because she knew that I had to work as a babysitter across the street from my parent's house. I couldn't hear the horn. So they prayed to God and asked Him to control my heart to see the car. For some reason, God allowed my deaf friend to get sick suddenly as we were sitting there talking in the living room. I was very shocked in that moment. I was telling her that my father kicked me out of the house. She told me to meet her at school tomorrow afternoon at softball practice.

So the next day I had a meeting with my best friend, deaf pastor and his wife, and Jewish believer friends to discuss the problem of my parents. They shared with me the verse in the Bible, Matthew 19:29, "And everyone that hath forsaken houses, brethren, sisters, father, mother, wife, children or lands for my name's sake shall receive a hundredfold and shall inherit everlasting life." I would follow Jesus rather than listen to my parents and reject Jesus. My father kicked me out of the house.

After school I was rushing to pick up my best friend and we stopped by the shopping park. I wrote the letter to my parents while I was so nervous. I said in the letter that I have my own free will as an 18-year old to leave my parents' house. Then we went to the notary public to seal the notary on the letter to be sent to my parents. Meanwhile, my parents searched somewhere for me but couldn't find me- I was hiding at my Jewish believer friend's house. They went to the police station and filed a missing persons report. Also, they sent two detectives to my best friend's place of work and asked her where I was. She answered, "I can't tell you where she is." They showed the missing persons report with my senior picture to my best friend. They couldn't do anything more about finding me; therefore, they left and informed my father about it.

The next day, my father filed a complaint on the matter of guardianship. The court made an appointment for Thursday May 5, 1983 at 9:30 AM. There he declared to newspaper reporters that I was mentally incompetent and that I needed guardianship as I was being brainwashed by a "Baptist Cult". His story in the newspaper lied against me. I was shocked and did not know what to do. I thought about it and asked my friend to call Jews for Jesus to help out with this emergency. Also, I told her to say that needed a lawyer but had no money!?

Jews for Jesus was shocked too about my situation with my parents, so they sent a missionary, Susan Perlman, to fly to Tulsa to help me get an attorney and prepare me for court. My attorney, John Mark Young, sent me to the Oklahoma School for the Deaf in Sulphur, Oklahoma to take an I.Q. test because the results of the test would show that I was competent as an 18-year old to be independent of my parents. I scored a 126 which is above normal and passed!! Three TV news and two newspaper reporters came to my attorney's office and interviewed my through the interpreter for 1 and 1/2 hours. I went to court on May 5, 1983 and had a battle in court for 5 days. The deaf people came by side to support me. Sadly though, the judge ruled that I was incompetent and needing guardianship.

Obviously, I had lost my case, but I still appealed to the court. I decided to appeal to the Oklahoma Supreme court, but they dismissed my case; that is, until they found out I was going to East Central University. In the meantime, the judge at district court planned to fire my attorneys for no reason. But somehow the judges from Oklahoma Supreme Court stopped and cancelled the case in Tulsa District Court. My attorneys came to see the judge in District Court and found out the information from Oklahoma Supreme Court.

Praise God! Then, one month later I went to my sister's house for thanksgiving. The Holy Spirit spoke to me inside my heart as I felt something strange, "The court will call your attorney." I doubted what was going on. I just forgot about it. The next day, I was at church listening to my deaf pastor preach, and at the same time the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart, "Oh yes, yes, the court will call your attorney!" I was suspicious and feeling funny. When the pastor finished his sermon, I asked one of the members what would happen, etc. She said that I would have to wait and see if God shows me that in fact He will answer my prayer. I said OK and returned to college.

I felt like giving up after six months of prayer, but determined myself to keep praying. Two days later, the Oklahoma Supreme Court made a decision in my favor as they voted 8 to 1! My attorney called my friend at college, "ROBIN IS FREE FROM INCOMPETENT AND GUARDIANSHIP! Robin is a winner over her case!"  It was November 29, 1983. Victory for me!!!  God answered my prayers! My friend was so surprised that I won the case. After the court ruled in my favor, I transferred to Tennessee Temple University in Chattanooga.

But my father got very mad; upset enough to appeal the case to the Oklahoma Supreme court a few times. But he lost again and had to appeal to the US Supreme Court in Washington, DC. He still lost 3 times. Now he leaves me alone as he can't force me to do what he wants to. The two main reasons for this are: Freedom of Religion and the rights of the Deaf.   In 1988, I earned Bachelor of Religious Education (BRE) in Missions from Tennessee Temple University.  I learned many mistakes in my experience working for the Lord.  It changes me to be a better person to continue serving the Lord no matter what situations I face.  Copyright © 2009 By Robin Polin.  All Rights Reserved.

Editor's notes:  After many years of praying for her father, her prayers were answered.  Robin's father passed away recently, but before he died he accepted Yeshua as his Messiah.  Robin continues to witness to her Deaf Jewish friends and has videos of her message on www.youtube.com.


More newspapers clips about Robin's court battle: 






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