A Letter From the Governing Body
HOW favored we are! As Jehovah’s Witnesses, we are privileged not only to know Jehovah, the only true and living God, the Creator of the universe, but also to bear his name and serve him. What greater blessing could there be!—Isa. 43:12; Heb. 8:11.
We have the hope of salvation and the commission to preach the good news of the Kingdom so that others too may worship Jehovah and share our hope. (Matt. 24:14; Rom. 10:13, 14; 1 Thess. 5:8) We also have the joy of being an international brotherhood of worshipers who love and actively help one another. How rewarding all of this is!
The Bible appropriately invites us: “Serve Jehovah with rejoicing. . . . Come into his gates with thanksgiving, into his courtyards with praise. Give thanks to him, bless his name. For Jehovah is good; his loving-kindness is to time indefinite, and his faithfulness to generation after generation.” (Ps. 100:2-5) Serving Jehovah with rejoicing is directly related to having a strong personal relationship with him. He makes possible such a relationship, and we are privileged to cultivate it. When we have that kind of relationship, we know that Jehovah is always available to help and strengthen us in times of need. We are confident that he will provide the spiritual strength and direction needed to meet the challenges of living in the last days of this system of things. Regardless of the pressures that we face, we are joyful in our ministry, and we thank Jehovah every day because, as his Word reminds us, ‘he cares for us.’—1 Pet. 5:7.
During the past year, Jehovah has indeed blessed us abundantly. At the “Doers of God’s Word” District Convention, we were thrilled to be with many thousands of others of like precious faith, singing and feasting together at Jehovah’s spiritual table. At our Congregation Book Studies, we have enjoyed the faith-strengthening experience of studying together the book Pay Attention to Daniel’s Prophecy! And on top of all of this, how thrilling it was for us to receive Volume I of the new publication Isaiah’s Prophecy—Light for All Mankind! ‘Our cup is well filled.’—Ps. 23:5.
What a joy it is to know that millions of us, spiritual brothers and sisters, are united in serving Jehovah! How encouraging to read about new peaks reached in connection with the field ministry! We rejoice at the multimillions who attended the Memorial of our Lord’s death—and did so in spite of world conditions. As we view the worldwide field, it is obvious that “the harvest, indeed, is great.” (Luke 10:2) Last year 5,555 Bible students every week, on an average, progressed to the point of symbolizing their dedication by water baptism. While the harvest is greater in some parts of the earth than in others, we all take delight in what Jehovah is doing. We see unmistakable evidence of his blessing on the united efforts of his servants.
The building of new Kingdom Halls has been a further cause for great rejoicing! We are so pleased to see the wholehearted support of this work by our brothers and sisters in developing countries. Hundreds of Kingdom Halls have already been built with the help of Kingdom Hall Construction Groups that have been given needed training. These brothers move from one congregation to another within their own country to take the lead in Kingdom Hall building projects. Since thousands of Kingdom Halls yet need to be built, the cry is for more volunteers within the developing countries to assist in this necessary work. If you live in such a country, can you make yourself available? Oh, how much our dear brothers and sisters appreciate having their own Kingdom Hall in which to meet for worship! And how grateful they are to the global brotherhood for the financial help to make it possible!
News of legal victories thrills us. Yet, in many places there are also influential people who would like to suppress the worship of Jehovah. As we deal with these situations, we are confident that, when it comes to helping, it does not matter to Jehovah how many the opposers are or how vulnerable his servants seem to be. (2 Chron. 14:11) We warmly commend all you brothers and sisters who continue to stand firm for true worship.
Continue to strengthen your faith and to rely heavily upon Jehovah for direction as you joyfully fulfill your Christian responsibilities. (Prov. 3:5, 6) There is no reason to become disheartened, no matter what the enemy may be permitted to do. Remember the encouragement given by Elisha to his anxious attendant: “Do not be afraid, for there are more who are with us than those who are with them.” (2 Ki. 6:15-17) Today, Jehovah’s heavenly army is as ready to protect the interests of pure worship as it was in Elisha’s day. We face the future with confidence. Jehovah is in control. The nations are no match for him. He has enthroned his Son with full ruling authority. “Happy are all those taking refuge in him.”—Ps. 2:1-6, 12.
Please remember that all of you dear brothers and sisters are constantly in our warmest thoughts. Our earnest prayer is that every one of you may “stand complete and with firm conviction in all the will of God.”—Col. 4:12.
Governing Body of Jehovah’s Witnesses