Presenting the Good News—Use Effective Introductions
1 Much good can be accomplished in our field ministry if we have prepared effective introductions. If we do not get the attention of the householder at the outset so as to start a conversation or place literature with him, we may not stimulate sufficient interest to warrant a return visit with the goal of starting a home Bible study. Therefore, much depends on how effective our opening words are. How can we make our introductions more effective?
PURPOSE OF INTRODUCTIONS
2 To start with, we must have clearly in mind the purpose of introductions. The School Guidebook says: “The introduction . . . should arouse interest in the subject. It ought to capture the attention of your audience and prepare them to give favorable consideration to what follows.” The book adds: “One of the best ways to arouse interest . . . is to get your audience involved.” (See page 113, paragraphs 1 and 2.) How can we do this in the field ministry?
3 The introductions found on pages 9-15 in the Reasoning book were prepared with the foregoing in mind. Analyze these. Note how they have been designed to capture interest and direct the attention of the householders to the subjects being considered. Many have used the introductions in the Reasoning book with good results. One sister said that by using a variety of introductions, her field service has become more enjoyable and she has been made more conscious of trying to engage people in conversations. Concerning the suggestions in the Reasoning book, she said: “They really work.”
4 What introductions have you found effective with the current Topic for Conversation? Have you tried those listed under the heading “Bible/God” on page 10 of the Reasoning book? One of them can be used with our current Topic for Conversation as follows: “I am glad to find you at home. I am sharing with my neighbors an encouraging thought from the Bible. Have you ever wondered what makes religion have real value with God?” Another introduction could be: “We are encouraging folks to read their Bible. The answers that it gives to important questions often surprise people. For example, notice how 2 Timothy 3:1, 2, and 2Ti 3:5 shows why God does not accept some of the worship engaged in by religious people.”
5 You may find it appropriate to use other introductions in addition to those included in the Reasoning book. Much will depend on the types of persons you meet in your territory. However, you will find it beneficial to follow the pattern of the introductions given in the Reasoning book. They present issues that concern people. They get the householder involved in the conversation. They are brief and to the point. There is much benefit in carefully examining the introductions presented in the Reasoning book, even if at times your territory may call for introductions not included in the book.
6 On the other hand, using the introductions in the Reasoning book word for word has been very effective. Some have read appropriate introductions directly from their Reasoning book when speaking over the intercom in high-security buildings. This has enabled them to be fluent and to the point, and to capture the householder’s attention. They have been invited into the building to continue the conversation. In one large city, this method has been the most effective means of reaching people in high-security buildings.
7 We want to keep in mind how important our opening words are in the field ministry. So much depends on their effectiveness. Like Solomon, we too should thoroughly search for delightful words as we prepare to use effective introductions in our house-to-house work. The Reasoning book will help us in this search.—Eccl. 12:9, 10.