Know Your Brothers Well
1 Our relationship with fellow worshipers involves more than just attending meetings with them at the Kingdom Hall. We are doers of God’s will, and that brings us into a spiritual relationship with Jesus. (Mark 3:34, 35) That, in turn, brings us into a spiritual family relationship with others in the Christian congregation, our spiritual brothers and sisters, whom we are commanded to love. (John 13:35) Thus, those in association with “members of the household of God” should strive to know one another well.—Eph. 2:19.
2 Know Your Brothers by Name: Do you know the names of all the brothers and sisters in your Congregation Book Study? The group is usually small, making it rather easy to get to know the names of most, if not all, who attend. If you do not even know their names, can you say that you know them well?
3 What about getting to know others, including children, who attend meetings at the Kingdom Hall? We may be inclined to associate with just a small circle of friends. While it is not wrong to enjoy regular fellowship with certain ones, we would not want to limit warm greetings and upbuilding conversation to just a few. We should “widen out,” putting forth an effort to get to know all our brothers and sisters well. (2 Cor. 6:11-13) That would obviously include getting to know them by name.
4 Brothers who conduct congregation meetings should try to get to know the names of all who attend. Calling on each one by name from the platform makes them feel that their comments are appreciated, and at the same time, it helps others to know their names. Of course, there will always be some newer ones or visitors in the audience, making it difficult for anyone to know every name. Nevertheless, a continuing sincere effort is encouraging to others and reflects a genuine personal interest.—Rom. 1:11, 12.
5 Take the Initiative to Get Well Acquainted: Traveling overseers are usually able to get well acquainted with a large number of brothers and sisters. How do they do it? In three principal ways: (1) They regularly work with them in the field service; (2) as their circumstances permit, they accept invitations to visit them in their homes; and (3) they take the initiative to greet both adults and children at the meetings.
6 Can you see ways to widen out in your associations and get to know your brothers better? We can certainly invite others to accompany us in the field service. Going from house to house, making return visits, going on Bible studies, or doing street witnessing with magazines are all excellent ways to get well acquainted. It is also good to invite others to visit your home, perhaps sharing a meal or light refreshments occasionally. Taking the initiative to approach new ones or those who tend to be shy not only does much to upbuild them spiritually but also brings rich rewards.—Acts 20:35; 1 Thess. 5:11.
7 Paul knew his brothers well. His making personal reference to many of them by name in his letters was proof of his unselfish interest in them and his genuine love for them. (1 Thess. 2:17; 2 Tim. 4:19, 20) Our efforts to know our brothers well will mean blessings for all of us.