Presenting the Good News—By Being Versatile
1 To be versatile means “embracing a variety of subjects, fields, or skills; also: turning with ease from one thing to another.” Can we develop this quality more fully in November and the months to come as we talk about the Kingdom and its blessings?
2 To illustrate, many skilled musicians are able to play a wide variety of music, bringing pleasure to their listeners. Like these musicians, we need to become versatile in making melody to our God. The psalmist declared at Psalm 146:2: “I will praise Jehovah during my lifetime. I will MAKE MELODY [“make music,” Byington] to my God as long as I am.” Jehovah has equipped us today to make music beautiful to the ears of honest-hearted ones, surpassing what any human can produce on a musical instrument. If we have developed versatility in our presentations, we can stir the hearts of truth seekers by skillfully sharing the good news. The greater our versatility, the greater the likelihood of our reaching the hearts of sheeplike ones.
3 We would not expect one who has recently started in field service to be as versatile as one with many years of experience. The new publisher would be limited and quite possibly shy in dealing with the varied situations he may encounter. With experience and loving assistance, he should soon learn to deal effectively with the many situations encountered at the doors. In fact, within a year or two many have been able to develop skill in the house-to-house work as well as on return visits and Bible studies. This was accomplished with effort and usually some assistance.
4 One key to success is to be ready and alert to change subjects when the householder is not interested in what we are saying, or prefers to discuss another subject. If you start talking about the “Kingdom Blessings Near” and plan to read Psalm 72:12-14, 16, but find the family in grief over the recent death of a loved one, you would not likely hold the householder’s attention if you insisted on carrying to completion the current Topic for Conversation. You would truly be fulfilling your commission to comfort and encourage those who need it (2 Cor. 1:4; Mark 13:10) if you opened your Bible to what Jehovah promised at John 5:28, 29; Revelation 21:3, 4; John 11:25 or other scriptures.
5 After our opening comments, we frequently encounter standard objections or viewpoints, which the householder feels should turn us away. These may or may not be sincere, but regardless, they should usually be acknowledged. When the householder says, “I have my own religion,” do we say, “We talk to people of all religions,” and continue with our planned presentation? Or could we say something like this: “It is a pleasure to find some people who are still interested in spiritual matters. We are not in a membership drive or selling for a church, but we stopped by today to share with you God’s promise that there will soon be an ‘abundance of peace’ through the Kingdom under Christ Jesus. Notice how this was foretold in Psalm 72:7.” This is just one example of how such an objection could be effectively answered.
6 Since it is our hope that someday all mankind on earth will be making beautiful music to Jehovah by praising him in united worship, we are inspired now to greater efforts to be versatile in presenting the good news. Thus Jehovah may yet use us to have an even greater share in helping many more to praise his glorious name.