When anxieties overwhelmed me, you comforted and soothed me.—Ps. 94:19.
Have you ever been plagued by anxiety? Perhaps it was because of what others have said or done or because of what you have said or done. For example, you may have made a mistake, and you worry that Jehovah will never forgive you. To make matters worse, you may believe that because you are overwhelmed by anxiety, you must lack faith—you must be a bad person. Consider, though, a few Scriptural examples. Hannah, the prophet Samuel’s mother, was a woman of great faith. Yet, she was overcome by anxiety when a member of her household treated her badly. (1 Sam. 1:7) The apostle Paul had strong faith, but he was overwhelmed with “anxiety for all the congregations.” (2 Cor. 11:28) King David had such strong faith that Jehovah developed a special fondness for him. (Acts 13:22) Even so, David made mistakes that caused him to suffer bouts of crushing anxiety. (Ps. 38:4) Jehovah comforted and soothed each one of them. w20.02 9:1-2
If anyone wants to come after me, let him disown himself.—Matt. 16:24.
When you make a dedication, you approach Jehovah in earnest prayer and tell him that you will use your life to serve him forever. When you dedicate yourself to God, you “disown” yourself. You now belong to Jehovah, which is a great privilege. (Rom. 14:8) You are telling him that from now on, you will be focused on serving him and not on pleasing yourself. Your dedication is a vow—a solemn promise made to God. Jehovah does not force us to make such a vow. But when we do, he expects us to fulfill it. (Ps. 116:12, 14) Your dedication is personal and private; it is between you and Jehovah. Baptism is public; it takes place in front of others, usually at an assembly or a convention. When you get baptized, you show others that you have already dedicated yourself to Jehovah. So your baptism lets others know that you love Jehovah your God with your whole heart, soul, mind, and strength and that you are determined to serve him forever.—Mark 12:30. w20.03 11:4-5
Let no one lead you astray.—2 Thess. 2:3.
Satan blurs people’s view of Jehovah. After the death of Jesus’ apostles, some who claimed to be Christians began to spread false teachings. (Acts 20:29, 30) These apostates started to blur the identity of the only true God. For example, they stopped using the divine name in their copies of the Bible and preferred such expressions as “Lord.” By removing God’s personal name and replacing it with “Lord,” they made it difficult for a Bible reader to see how Jehovah is different from the other “lords” mentioned in the Scriptures. (1 Cor. 8:5) They used the same term, “Lord,” for Jehovah and for Jesus, making it difficult to understand that Jehovah and his Son are different individuals with distinct positions. (John 17:3) This confusion contributed to the development of the doctrine of the Trinity—a doctrine not taught in God’s Word. As a result, many see God as mysterious and believe that we cannot know him. What a lie!—Acts 17:27. w19.06 23:11