Love the foreign resident.—Deut. 10:19.
In recent years, many countries have experienced an influx of refugees. Why not learn a greeting in the languages commonly spoken by newcomers in your area? Additionally, why not learn a few phrases that may capture their interest? You might then be able to direct them to jw.org and show them the variety of videos and publications available in their language. Jehovah lovingly provides the Life and Ministry Meeting so that we can become more effective in the field ministry. The practical instruction we receive at this meeting helps many of us feel more confident about making return visits and conducting Bible studies. Parents, help your children to let their light shine by teaching them to comment in their own words. Their simple, heartfelt expressions have sometimes prompted newly interested ones to recognize the ring of truth.—1 Cor. 14:25. w18.06 22-23 ¶7-9
Welcome one another, just as the Christ also welcomed you.—Rom. 15:7.
It is good to remember that at one time we were all “strangers,” or foreigners, not close to God. (Eph. 2:12) But Jehovah drew us to him “with the cords of love.” (Hos. 11:4; John 6:44) And Christ welcomed us. He opened the door, as it were, so that we could become part of God’s family. Since Jesus has kindly accepted us, as imperfect as we are, it should be unthinkable for us to reject anyone else! Divisions, prejudice, and hostility will doubtless increase in the world as we approach the end of this wicked system. (Gal. 5:19-21; 2 Tim. 3:13) As servants of Jehovah, though, we seek the wisdom from above, which is impartial and promotes peace. (Jas. 3:17, 18) We rejoice as we forge friendships with people from other lands, accepting cultural differences and possibly even learning the languages of others. When we do this, peace flows just like a river, and justice like the waves of the sea.—Isa. 48:17, 18. w18.06 12 ¶18-19
[Have] your feet shod in readiness to declare the good news of peace.—Eph. 6:15.
A Roman soldier who was not wearing his boots was not ready to march into battle. His sandallike boots were made of three layers of leather fastened together that gave him an excellent foothold. The design made the footwear both durable and comfortable. While the literal boots worn by Roman soldiers carried them into war, the symbolic footwear worn by Christians helps them deliver a message of peace. (Isa. 52:7; Rom. 10:15) Even so, it takes courage to speak up when the opportunity arises. “I was afraid to witness to my classmates,” says 20-year-old Bo. “I think I was embarrassed. Looking back, I don’t know why I should have been. Now I’m happy to witness to my peers.” Many young ones have found that if they are well-prepared to declare the good news, they feel more comfortable doing it. w18.05 29 ¶9-11
Keep bearing much fruit.—John 15:8.
Jesus told his apostles: “I give you my peace.” (John 14:27) How does that gift—his peace—help us to bear fruit? As we endure, we experience in our heart a lasting feeling of peace that results from knowing that we have Jehovah’s and Jesus’ approval. (Ps. 149:4; Rom. 5:3, 4; Col. 3:15) After Jesus stated his desire that the joy experienced by the apostles might “be made full,” he explained to them the importance of showing self-sacrificing love. (John 15:11-13) Next, he said: “I have called you friends.” What a precious gift to receive—friendship with Jesus! What did the apostles have to do to remain his friends? They had to “go and keep bearing fruit.” (John 15:14-16) Some two years earlier, Jesus had instructed his apostles: “As you go, preach, saying: ‘The Kingdom of the heavens has drawn near.’” (Matt. 10:7) So on the last evening before his death, he encouraged them to endure in the work they had started.—Matt. 24:13; Mark 3:14. w18.05 20-21 ¶15-16
Whatever a person is sowing, this he will also reap.—Gal. 6:7.
Youths, make up your mind to focus your life on your desire to serve Jehovah. This means centering your life on spiritual goals. Other youths of your age probably center their lives on having a good time, and they will likely invite you to join them. Sooner or later you will need to show how determined you are to stick to the choices you have made. Do not be distracted by peer pressure. There are a number of ways to combat peer pressure. For instance, avoid situations that are known to be tempting. (Prov. 22:3) And remind yourself of the painful consequences of joining others in bad behavior. A further help is to admit your own need for advice. Humility will allow you to be open to suggestions from your parents and spiritually mature ones in the congregation. (1 Pet. 5:5, 6) Are you humble enough to accept sound advice? w18.04 28-29 ¶14-16
Hold fast to what you have until I come. And to the one who conquers and observes my deeds down to the end, I will give authority over the nations.—Rev. 2:25, 26.
In his messages to certain congregations of Asia Minor, Jesus expressed appreciation for the work his followers did. For example, he began his message to the congregation in Thyatira by saying: “I know your deeds, and your love and faith and ministry and endurance, and that your deeds of late are more than those you did at first.” (Rev. 2:19) Jesus not only mentioned their increased activity but also commended them for the qualities that motivated their good deeds. Although Jesus needed to counsel some in Thyatira, he still began and ended his message with encouragement. (Rev. 2:27, 28) Think of the authority Jesus has as head of all the congregations. He does not have to thank us for the work we do for him. Even so, he makes a point of expressing appreciation. What an excellent example he sets for elders! w19.02 16 ¶10
Judas and Silas . . . encouraged the brothers with many talks and strengthened them.—Acts 15:32.
The first-century governing body proved to be a source of encouragement both to those taking the lead and to Christians in general. They sent two of their number, Peter and John, to pray for the new believers to receive holy spirit. (Acts 8:5, 14-17) How Philip himself as well as those he had converted must have been encouraged by this support from the governing body! Today, the Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses gives encouragement to Bethel family members, to special full-time field workers, and indeed, to the entire international brotherhood of true Christians. And the result is the same as in the first century—rejoicing over the encouragement! In addition, in 2015 the Governing Body published the brochure Return to Jehovah, which has proved to be a rich source of encouragement to many throughout the world. w18.04 19 ¶18-20
You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.—John 8:32.
People may think that the more freedom they have, the better off they will be, but the reality is that having unbounded freedom is a two-edged sword. We shudder to imagine what the world would be like if there were no restraints at all. For this reason, The World Book Encyclopedia states: “The laws of every organized society form a complicated pattern of balanced freedoms and restrictions.” “Complicated” is surely the right word. Just think of the volumes and volumes of laws written by man, let alone the armies of lawyers and judges needed to interpret and administer them. Jesus’ direction for gaining true freedom involves two requirements: First, accept the truth that he taught, and second, become his disciple. Doing so will lead to true freedom. But freedom from what? Jesus went on to explain: “Every doer of sin is a slave of sin. . . . If the Son sets you free, you will be truly free.”—John 8:34, 36. w18.04 6-7 ¶13-14
All of you have . . . fellow feeling.—1 Pet. 3:8.
We enjoy being around people who care about our feelings and welfare. They try to put themselves in our place, to discern what we are thinking and feeling. They anticipate our needs and offer help—sometimes even before we ask for it. We appreciate people who show that they have “fellow feeling” for us. As Christians, we all want to show empathy, or fellow feeling. Realistically, though, we may need to work at it. Why? For one thing, we are imperfect. (Rom. 3:23) So we must fight the inborn tendency to think mainly of ourselves. Also, some of us may struggle to show empathy because of our upbringing or past circumstances. Finally, we could be influenced by the attitude of people around us. In these last days, many do not consider the feelings of others. Rather, they are “lovers of themselves.” (2 Tim. 3:1, 2) However, we can improve in showing fellow feeling by imitating Jehovah God and his Son, Jesus Christ. w19.03 14 ¶1-3
Safeguard your heart.—Prov. 4:23.
The last of the Ten Commandments prohibited coveting, or developing a wrong desire for what belongs to another. (Deut. 5:21; Rom. 7:7) Jehovah gave this law to teach a valuable lesson—his people must guard their heart, that is, their thoughts, feelings, and reasonings. He knows that wicked acts begin as wicked thoughts and feelings. King David, for example, fell into that trap. Normally, he was a good man. But on one occasion, he coveted another man’s wife. His desire led to sin. (Jas. 1:14, 15) David committed adultery, tried to deceive the woman’s husband, and then had him killed. (2 Sam. 11:2-4; 12:7-11) Jehovah sees beyond a person’s outward appearance. He sees what we really are inside, in our heart. (1 Sam. 16:7) No thought, no feeling, no action can be kept secret from him. He looks for and encourages the good in us. But he wants us to identify and control wrong thoughts before they become wrong actions.—2 Chron. 16:9; Matt. 5:27-30. w19.02 21 ¶9; 22 ¶11
Seek Jehovah, all you meek ones of the earth . . . Seek meekness.—Zeph. 2:3.
The Bible describes Moses as being “by far the meekest of all the men on the face of the earth.” (Num. 12:3) Does this mean that he was weak, indecisive, and afraid of confrontations? That is how some might describe a meek person. But such an idea is far from the truth. Moses was a strong, decisive, and courageous servant of God. With Jehovah’s help, he confronted the mighty ruler of Egypt, led perhaps 3,000,000 people through a desert, and helped the nation of Israel conquer their enemies. We do not face the challenges that Moses overcame, but each day we must deal with people or situations that make it difficult to be meek. However, we have a powerful incentive to develop this quality. Jehovah promises that “the meek will possess the earth.” (Ps. 37:11) Would you describe yourself as being meek? Would others describe you that way? w19.02 8 ¶1-2
Woe to those who say that . . . bad is good.—Isa. 5:20.
Humans have had a conscience ever since man has been on the earth. After Adam and Eve broke Jehovah’s law, they hid themselves. This indicates that their conscience was bothering them. Those with a poorly trained conscience can be likened to a ship that is navigating with a defective compass. Setting off on a journey without an accurate compass can be treacherous. The winds and currents of the ocean can easily throw a ship off course. A properly calibrated compass can help the captain to keep the ship on course. Our conscience can be likened to a moral compass. It is an inner sense of right or wrong that can guide us in the right direction. But in order for our conscience to be an effective guide, it must be properly adjusted, or calibrated. When a person’s conscience is not properly trained, it does not act as a restraint from wrongdoing. (1 Tim. 4:1, 2) Such a conscience might even convince us that “bad is good.” w18.06 16 ¶1-3
Stop being molded by this system of things.—Rom. 12:2.
We do well to recognize and reject worldly thinking when it is presented in less obvious ways. For example, a news report might be angled in such a way so as to favor certain political opinions. A human interest story might advance the world’s view of human goals and achievements. Some movies and books promote the “me first” and “family first” philosophies, making them seem reasonable, appealing, even right. Such viewpoints overlook the Scriptural view that our families and self-worth thrive when we love Jehovah above all. (Matt. 22:36-39) This does not mean that it is wrong to enjoy wholesome entertainment. Still, we do well to ask ourselves these questions: ‘Do we recognize the world’s teachings even when they are promoted indirectly? Do we limit our children’s exposure—and even our own—to certain programs or reading material? Do we counteract worldly ideas heard or seen by our children with Jehovah’s view of matters?’ w18.11 22 ¶18-19
Do not be afraid, for I am with you.—Isa. 41:10.
Jehovah shows that he is with us by giving us his full attention and his warm affection. Note how he expresses his tender and deep feelings for us. “You became precious in my eyes,” says Jehovah. “You were honored, and I have loved you.” (Isa. 43:4) No force in the universe can make Jehovah abandon his love for those who serve him; his loyalty to us is unshakable. (Isa. 54:10) Jehovah does not promise to remove the challenges that make life difficult, but he will not allow “the rivers” of problems to drown us or “the flame” of trials to do us any permanent damage. He guarantees that he will be with us, helping us to “pass through” those challenges. What will Jehovah do? He will help quiet our fears so that we can maintain our integrity to him, even if we face death. (Isa. 41:13; 43:2) When we trust in God’s promise “I will be with you,” we too will be courageous and strong as we endure trials. w19.01 3 ¶4-6
Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but the counsel of Jehovah is what will prevail.—Prov. 19:21.
If you are a young person, you may have been encouraged by teachers, guidance counselors, or others to pursue higher education and a lucrative career. Jehovah, however, advises you to take a different course. To be sure, he wants you to work hard while you are at school so that you are able to earn a living after you graduate. (Col. 3:23) But when you are deciding on your priorities in life, he encourages you to be guided by sound principles that take into account his purpose and his will for us during this time of the end. (Matt. 24:14) Jehovah knows what lies ahead for the present world, and he knows how soon its end will come. (Isa. 46:10; Matt. 24:3, 36) He also knows us—what gives us true satisfaction and happiness as well as what leads us to disappointment and unhappiness. So no matter how reasonable human advice may seem, if it does not take God’s Word into account, it is not wisdom at all. w18.12 19 ¶1-2
The wicked will be no more.—Ps. 37:10.
Instead, “the meek will possess the earth, and they will find exquisite delight in the abundance of peace.” David was also inspired to predict: “The righteous will possess the earth, and they will live forever on it.” (Ps. 37:11, 29; 2 Sam. 23:2) What effect do you think those assurances had on people who wanted to do God’s will? They would have a basis for expecting that if only righteous people were living on earth, in time a paradise like the garden of Eden would be restored. Over time, most Israelites claiming to serve Jehovah turned their backs on him and on true worship. So God let the Babylonians conquer his people, ruin their land, and carry many of them into exile. (2 Chron. 36:15-21; Jer. 4:22-27) Still, God’s prophets foretold that after 70 years, his people would return to their homeland. Those prophecies were fulfilled. But they also have meaning for us—a coming paradise on earth. w18.12 4 ¶9-10
As the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.—Isa. 55:9.
Much worldly advice is in conflict with the Scriptures. Still, might some of it be more suited to our times? “Wisdom is proved righteous by its works,” said Jesus. (Matt. 11:19) The world has made considerable advancement in technology; however, it has been unable to solve the major problems that stand in the way of happiness, such as war, racism, and crime. And what of its lenient view of morality? Many people acknowledge that this is, not solving, but contributing to family breakdown, illness, and other troubles. On the other hand, Christians who adopt God’s viewpoint are enjoying improved family relationships, the healthful benefits of moral cleanness, and peace among fellow believers on a worldwide scale. (Isa. 2:4; Acts 10:34, 35; 1 Cor. 6:9-11) Does this not show that Jehovah’s thinking is superior to that of the world? w18.11 20 ¶8-10
Bad associations spoil useful habits.—1 Cor. 15:33.
Although we endeavor to have good relations with family members and treat them kindly, we must be careful not to compromise the truth to please them. While we will continue to try to get along well with family members, we will have close friendships only with those who love Jehovah. All who walk in the truth must be holy. (Isa. 35:8; 1 Pet. 1:14-16) When coming into the truth, all of us had to make adjustments to conform to the Bible’s righteous standards. Some had to undergo major changes. Whichever the case, we must never trade our pure, holy condition for the immoral filth of this world. How can we avoid succumbing to immoral conduct? Reflect on the high price that Jehovah paid in order for us to be holy—the precious blood of his Son, Jesus Christ. (1 Pet. 1:18, 19) To maintain our clean standing before Jehovah, we need to keep the value of Jesus’ ransom sacrifice foremost in our mind and heart. w18.11 11 ¶10-11
I will show a waiting attitude for the God of my salvation. My God will hear me.—Mic. 7:7.
Many full-time servants can testify that focusing on the ministry helped them to maintain their balance despite changing circumstances. As their examples show, if we make the best of our circumstances and wait confidently on Jehovah, we will maintain our inner peace. We may even realize that we have derived much spiritual benefit from adjusting to a new set of circumstances. If life takes an unexpected turn—whether as a result of a change in our theocratic assignments, health problems, or new family responsibilities—be assured that Jehovah cares for you and will help you at the right time. (Heb. 4:16; 1 Pet. 5:6, 7) In the meantime, try to make the best of your situation. Draw close to your heavenly Father through prayer, and learn to leave yourself in his caring hands. In this way, you too will maintain inner peace despite changing circumstances. w18.10 30 ¶17; 31 ¶19, 22
[Jehovah] well knows how we are formed, remembering that we are dust.—Ps. 103:14.
The Bible provides many examples of the considerate way in which Jehovah deals with his servants. For instance, note the thoughtful way that God helped young Samuel to deliver a judgment message to High Priest Eli as recorded at 1 Samuel 3:1-18. Jehovah’s Law commanded children to respect the aged, especially a chieftain. (Ex. 22:28; Lev. 19:32) Can you imagine Samuel going up to Eli in the morning and boldly telling him God’s stinging judgment message? Of course not! Indeed, the account tells us that Samuel “was afraid to tell Eli of the vision.” However, God made clear to Eli that He was calling Samuel. As a result, Eli took charge of the situation and told Samuel to speak and not to hide “a single word.” Samuel obediently “told him everything,” and his words harmonized with an earlier message. (1 Sam. 2:27-36) The account involving Samuel and Eli shows us how considerate and wise Jehovah is. w18.09 23 ¶2; 24 ¶4-5
O Jehovah, who may be a guest in your tent? . . . The one who is . . . speaking the truth in his heart.—Ps. 15:1, 2.
Spreading lies has become commonplace in today’s society. As stated in the article “Why We Lie” by Y. Bhattacharjee, “lying has come to be recognized as a deeply ingrained human trait.” People often resort to lying either to protect themselves or to promote themselves. They lie to cover up their mistakes and misdeeds or to gain economic and personal advantages. As the article states, there are people who “lie with ease, in ways big and small, to strangers, co-workers, friends, and loved ones.” What is the result of all this lying? Trust is lost and relationships can be ruined. The psalmist David prayed to Jehovah: “You find pleasure in truth in the inner person.” (Ps. 51:6) David knew that our being truthful comes from the inside, from our heart. In every aspect of life, true Christians “speak the truth with one another.”—Zech. 8:16. w18.10 7 ¶4; 8 ¶9-10; 10 ¶19
He led them in security, and they felt no fear.—Ps. 78:53.
When the Israelites left Egypt in 1513 B.C.E., they may have numbered more than three million. Spanning three or even four generations, there were children, elderly ones, and no doubt some who were infirm or disabled. To lead such a vast crowd out of Egypt certainly called for an understanding and thoughtful Leader. Jehovah, by means of Moses, proved to be such. As a result, the Israelites felt safe as they left the only home they had ever known. (Ps. 78:52) How did Jehovah make his people feel safe and secure? For one thing, he led them out of Egypt in well-organized “battle formation.” (Ex. 13:18) Such organization surely reassured the Israelites that their God was in control. Also, Jehovah made his presence visibly manifest by means of “a cloud by day and . . . the light of a fire” at night. (Ps. 78:14) In effect, Jehovah was saying: “Do not be afraid. I am with you to guide and protect you.” w18.09 26 ¶11-12
O that in the Grave you would conceal me, . . . that you would set a time limit for me and remember me.—Job 14:13.
Back in Bible times, some of God’s faithful servants were so overwhelmed by their circumstances that they felt that they wanted to die. For example, pain-ridden Job lamented: “I loathe my life; I do not want to go on living.” (Job 7:16) Jonah was so disappointed with the way things had turned out in his assignment that he said: “Now, O Jehovah, please take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live.” (Jonah 4:3) Also, at one point the faithful prophet Elijah felt so affected by his situation that he asked that he might die. He said: “It is enough! Now, O Jehovah, take my life away.” (1 Ki. 19:4) However, Jehovah valued those devoted servants and wanted them to live. Instead of condemning how they felt, he helped them to overcome their desire to die and built them up in love so that they could continue serving him faithfully. w18.09 13 ¶4
We are God’s fellow workers.—1 Cor. 3:9.
God’s fellow workers are noted for practicing hospitality. In the Christian Greek Scriptures, the term translated “hospitality” means “kindness to strangers.” (Heb. 13:2; ftn.) God’s Word recounts events that teach us to show such love. (Gen. 18:1-5) We can and should seize opportunities to help others regularly, whether they are “related to us in the faith” or not. (Gal. 6:10) Can you work with God by showing hospitality to visiting full-time servants? (3 John 5, 8) Such occasions often provide an opportunity for “an interchange of encouragement.” (Rom. 1:11, 12) God’s Word encourages men in the congregation to work with Jehovah by reaching out for privileges of service and oversight. (1 Tim. 3:1, 8, 9; 1 Pet. 5:2, 3) Those who do so want to assist others in both practical and spiritual matters. (Acts 6:1-4) And those who care for necessary congregation duties will tell you that it is most enjoyable to assist others. w18.08 24 ¶6-7; 25 ¶10
Do not severely criticize an older man. On the contrary, appeal to him as a father.—1 Tim. 5:1.
Although Timothy had a measure of authority over such older brothers, he was to treat them with compassion and respect. However, how far would we take that principle? For example, should we feel obligated to defer to someone older if he is willfully sinning or is advocating something displeasing to Jehovah? Jehovah will not judge by the outward appearance and will not excuse a willful sinner simply because he is older. Note the principle found at Isaiah 65:20: “The sinner will be cursed, even though he is a hundred years of age.” A similar principle is demonstrated in Ezekiel’s vision. (Ezek. 9:5-7) Thus, our main concern must always be to show respect for the Ancient of Days, Jehovah God. (Dan. 7:9, 10, 13, 14) If we do so, we will not be afraid to correct a person needing counsel, regardless of his age.—Gal. 6:1. w18.08 11 ¶13-14
The naive person believes every word, but the shrewd one ponders each step.—Prov. 14:15.
As true Christians, we need to develop the ability to evaluate information and reach accurate conclusions. (Prov. 3:21-23; 8:4, 5) If we do not cultivate this ability, we will be far more vulnerable to the efforts of Satan and his world to distort our thinking. (Eph. 5:6; Col. 2:8) Of course, only if we have the facts can we reach right conclusions. Today, people are bombarded with information. Internet websites, television, and other mass media present a seemingly unending array of ideas. Many people are also flooded with e-mails, text messages, and reports from well-meaning friends and acquaintances. Since the deliberate spreading of wrong information and the distorting of facts are common, we have good reason to be cautious and to evaluate carefully what we hear. w18.08 3 ¶1, 3
You have found favor with God.—Luke 1:30.
When it came time for God’s Son to be born as a human, Jehovah selected a humble virgin girl, Mary, to be the mother of this special child. Mary lived in the insignificant city of Nazareth, far from Jerusalem and its magnificent temple. (Luke 1:26-33) Mary revealed her deep spirituality when she later spoke to her relative Elizabeth. (Luke 1:46-55) Yes, Jehovah had been observing Mary, and he granted her this unexpected privilege because of her faithfulness. When Mary eventually gave birth to Jesus, Jehovah did not honor any of the prominent officials or rulers in Jerusalem and Bethlehem by letting them know what had happened. Angels appeared to lowly shepherds who were caring for sheep in the fields outside Bethlehem. (Luke 2:8-14) These shepherds then visited the newborn baby. (Luke 2:15-17) How pleasantly surprised Mary and Joseph must have been to see Jesus honored in such a manner! w18.07 9-10 ¶11-12
Jehovah became furious at Solomon.—1 Ki. 11:9.
Why was Jehovah’s anger raised against Solomon? The Bible reports: “Because his heart had inclined away from Jehovah . . . , who had appeared to him twice and had warned him about this very thing, that he should not go after other gods. But he did not obey what Jehovah had commanded.” As a result, God withdrew his approval and support. Solomon’s heirs lost the unified kingdom of Israel and suffered many calamities for generations to come. (1 Ki. 11:9-13) As in Solomon’s case, one of the greatest threats to spirituality is friendship with those who do not understand or respect Jehovah’s standards. Some may be associated with the congregation but may be spiritually weak. Others could be relatives, neighbors, coworkers, or schoolmates who are not worshippers of Jehovah. In any case, if our close associates do not show a high regard for Jehovah’s standards, they can in time destroy our good standing with God. w18.07 19 ¶9-10
The whole world is lying in the power of the wicked one.—1 John 5:19.
Satan uses movies and television shows to spread his way of thinking. He understands that storytelling does much more than entertain us; it teaches us how to think, feel, and act. Jesus made good use of this method of teaching. Take, for example, his parables of the neighborly Samaritan and of the son who left home and wasted his inheritance. (Matt. 13:34; Luke 10:29-37; 15:11-32) However, those who are infected with Satan’s thinking can use storytelling to corrupt us. We need to be balanced. Movies and TV shows can entertain and educate us without contaminating our thinking. But we must be cautious. When choosing entertainment, we do well to ask ourselves, ‘Is this movie or TV show teaching me that it is all right to give in to my fleshly desires?’ (Gal. 5:19-21; Eph. 2:1-3) What should you do if you detect that a program is promoting satanic thinking? Avoid it as you would a contagious disease! w19.01 15-16 ¶6-7
Accept the helmet of salvation.—Eph. 6:17.
Just as a helmet protects a soldier’s brain, our “hope of salvation” protects our mind, our thinking ability. (1 Thess. 5:8; Prov. 3:21) How could Satan induce us to remove our helmet? Consider the way he dealt with Jesus. Satan surely knew that Jesus had the hope of eventually ruling mankind. But Jesus would have to wait until Jehovah’s appointed time. And before then, he would have to suffer and die. So Satan offered Jesus the chance to fulfill his hope sooner. Satan suggested that if Jesus would do one act of worship, he could have it all and have it right then. (Luke 4:5-7) Similarly, Satan knows that Jehovah offers us material benefits in the new system. But we have to wait, and we might have to suffer hardships in the meantime. So Satan offers us tempting opportunities to enjoy such a life now. He wants us to seek material benefits first—to have it all and have it now. Satan urges us to seek the Kingdom second.—Matt. 6:31-33. w18.05 30-31 ¶15-17
Let your heart be glad in the days of your youth.—Eccl. 11:9.
Yes, Jehovah wants you as a young person to have a joyful heart. Keep yourself focused on theocratic goals, including Jehovah in all your plans. The earlier you start to do this, the sooner you will sense Jehovah’s guidance, protection, and blessing. Think of all the sound counsel you find in God’s Word, and take to heart the advice: “Remember, then, your Grand Creator in the days of your youth.” (Eccl. 12:1) Young people in the congregation deserve warm commendation for being determined to focus their lives on serving Jehovah. Youths do this by reaching out for spiritual goals and by giving the preaching work high priority. Moreover, they make up their mind not to be distracted by this world. Adolescents can be sure that their hard work is not in vain. They have the loving support of their brothers and sisters, and when they commit themselves to Jehovah, their plans in life will succeed. w18.04 29 ¶17, 19