Presenting the Good News—To Children
1 A look around you at most congregation meetings and certainly at large conventions provides abundant evidence that there is a vast crowd of ‘young men, virgins, and boys’—yes, children—praising Jehovah. (Ps. 148:12) This should remind each of us of the need to give young ones we meet in field service every opportunity to learn of Jehovah and his promises. Our being alert and prepared to witness to children will afford them this opportunity. There are several factors that should be considered.
2 A positive attitude toward children and their capacity for developing a love for Jehovah is needed. Bible examples, such as Samuel, David, and Timothy, provide assurance that those young in years can be unswervingly devoted to God. (1 Sam. 2:18; Ps. 71:17; 2 Tim. 3:14, 15) There are also modern-day examples.
WHEN A YOUNG ONE ANSWERS THE DOOR
3 When a youth answers the door, do you customarily ask to speak with the parents? Do you then proceed to the next door if the parents are not at home? That young person’s life is precious also. Why not adjust your presentation and share the good news with him or her? A simple presentation explaining what Paradise will be like or a brief statement regarding what the future holds could be used to arouse interest. For example, many children are familiar with the Lord’s Prayer and can readily understand comments as to what the answer to that prayer will mean in the way of changed world conditions.
4 In witnessing to children, it is important to respect parental authority. Discretion should be used in offering literature to children. Depending on their age, it may be appropriate to ask if their parents allow them to choose their own reading material. If they are not at liberty to accept literature but do show interest, witness to them orally and arrange to call back when their parents are at home. This may be a stepping-stone to helping the parents as well.
5 Being adaptable and alert includes being aware that we have what young people need. Jehovah’s organization has prepared appealing publications with timely information designed to reach young people of all ages. The Great Teacher and Bible Stories books hold special interest for those tender in years. The Youth and Family Life books contain pertinent information to aid those who are older. And what a treasure is to be found in the Watchtower and Awake! magazines! The Awake! feature “Young People Ask . . . ” and the Watchtower series “Jesus’ Life and Ministry” would be appropriate to offer to children. The four-color illustrations throughout both magazines can stir the imagination of youths and arouse in them a desire to know the God who is responsible for the endless marvels of creation. Not to be overlooked are the colorful brochures, such as Enjoy Life on Earth Forever! So when you prepare for field service, give thought to what you can take along that would appeal to young people.
6 Jehovah’s execution of judgment will affect all, including “young man and virgin and little child.” (Ezek. 9:6) The fact that some who have served Jehovah for many years embraced the truth at a tender age should help us see the need to give a witness to children we meet in the ministry. We can show loving concern just as Jesus did and bring a blessing by sharing the good news with them. (Matt. 19:14, 15) Be positive and give an appropriate witness to young ones, with the hope that they too may become praisers of Jehovah.