Rely on Jehovah to Make Things Grow
1 “I experienced for the first time the unique joy of helping to establish a new congregation. This took more than two years of diligent work, constant prayers and reliance on Jehovah who ‘makes things grow.’” So wrote a conscientious pioneer who learned the need to rely on Jehovah for growth. (1 Cor. 3:5-9) In our search for spiritually inclined people, we too have need of God’s backing if our ministry is to bear fruit.—Prov. 3:5, 6.
2 Growth Requires Cultivation: The seed of truth needs to be cultivated if it is to grow. Calling again within a day or two of the initial visit often produces good results. Be warm and friendly. Put the other person at ease. Do not do all the talking. Allow him to get to know you, and show that you are interested in him as a person.
3 During July and continuing through August, we are concentrating on offering a variety of brochures to the people we meet. However, we also need to follow through on the interest that is found and on the placements that are made. We do this by making return visits and offering Bible studies. (Matt. 28:19, 20) To this end, the Require brochure may be used to start studies. You may find the following four suggestions helpful.
4 If you talked with someone who was concerned about the way the world is headed, you might renew the conversation by saying:
◼ “I believe that you are as concerned as I am about the moral breakdown in human society. We hear distressing reports of domestic violence, resulting in abuse to children, parents, and marriage mates. And it seems that many people think nothing of lying or stealing to satisfy their own desires. Do you think it matters to God how people live their lives? [Allow for response.] God established certain standards for man to live by, and they are really not burdensome to us.” Read 1 John 5:3. Then present the Require brochure, and open it to lesson 10. Read the first paragraph. Point out the italicized words and phrases at the beginning of paragraphs 2-6, and ask the householder which practice he or she feels is the most harmful to society. Read the related paragraph and look up one or two of the scriptures as opportunity allows. Conclude by reading paragraph 7, and then make arrangements to call back for a further discussion.
5 To those whom you have met that are family oriented, you could say something like this:
◼ “Do you think it is reasonable to expect that the Creator would give us the tools we need to build a successful family life?” Allow for response. Introduce the Require brochure, turn to lesson 8, and explain that it contains principles from the Bible for every member of the family. Offer to demonstrate how to use the brochure with the Bible to get the greatest benefit from it. Follow the instructions that are found on page 2 of the brochure. Make arrangements to call back to continue the study of the lesson, or if you complete it, to study another lesson that the householder chooses in the brochure.
6 Here is a direct approach you might use to offer our Bible study program. Show the “Require” brochure, and say:
◼ “This brochure contains a well-rounded-out study course covering the basic teachings of the Bible. On each page, you will find answers to questions that have troubled people for centuries. For example, What is God’s purpose for the earth?” Turn to lesson 5, and read the questions at the start of the lesson. Ask the householder which one interests him the most, and then read the corresponding paragraph(s), looking up appropriate scriptures. Explain that the satisfying answers to the other questions can be found just as easily as this one. Suggest that you return again to discuss another question and answer.
7 Or you might prefer to try a simplified approach for starting a Bible study by saying:
◼ “Did you know that by taking just a few minutes, you can find the answer to an important Bible question? For example, . . .” Then state a question that appears at the beginning of one of the lessons in the brochure, one that you think would appeal to the individual. For some ideas of questions that you might use, see paragraphs 15 and 16 in the March 1997 Our Kingdom Ministry insert, entitled: “Muster Up Boldness to Make Return Visits.”
8 Joyfully accepting the challenge of making return visits and conducting Bible studies is part of being God’s “fellow workers.” (1 Cor. 3:9) As we work hard to cultivate the interest we find and then rely on Jehovah to make things grow, we will experience the real satisfaction that no other work can produce.