“Recently I went out with one of our elders and was a little disappointed when he was only delivering tracts.”
The suggestion to lead with a scripture is not something original on my part. From time to time it has been suggested by the theocratic organization. I have run with it as a staple more than is usually emphasized, but the idea is not mine. I mean, how can it be going off on one’s own tangent by leading with a scripture? If one finds that it works well. one tends to do it more and more, and that has been the case with me.
Similarly, the working with the video ‘Would You Like Good News’? which leads to the ‘Good News From God’ table of contents & the invitation to the householder to choose any one he/she likes was not my idea at all. That came from the circuit overseer on his last visit. I was at almost every meeting for field service and he worked to make us all familiar with how videos could be used. Not once did he mention the current CLAM presentation of ‘Where are the Dead?’ Was he going off on his own tangent & thinking he knew better than God’s organization? No, he is just showing that there are a lot of ways to present the good news and he was putting emphasis on a method that works well.
Q: Recently I went out with one of our elders and was a little disappointed when he was only delivering tracts. He was not trying to initiate conversation at all.
Q2: Different ones will often fall back on old habits, even bad ones (and even Elders).
Q2, I am going to be very very bold here and suggest that if he is merely offering tracts and making no effort to start conversations it is because he finds the suggested presentations cumbersome and awkward, and he would benefit by trying the scripture-first or the video one. I mean, he is an elder. He wants to be seen taking the lead. Everyone varies the pace and settings vary, as does one’s mood on any given day. Yet limiting one’s ministry to offering tracts with no effort to converse is faithful, but it is not taking the lead, and unless I am very mistaken, his conscience is letting him hear about it (unless he has switched into auto-pilot, turning it off.)
One disadvantage of some of the CLAM presentations is that they require getting one’s head around. They require preparation. One advantage of the scripture-first or the Would You Like to Hear Good News presentation is that they do not—to just read a verse with a sentence or two as to why you chose it is not hard. We all know the experience of working with a new presentation and the first householder or two becomes a lab rat while we work the bugs out. The problem is gone with scripture or video first.
Q3: I also try to talk about something that is interesting to any person, to cite a scripture and direct the person to our website at the end of the presentation
Yes. Whatever works. By all means give the suggested presentations a try, even a workout if you like, but don’t feel that they must be adhered to in order to be following Jehovah’s direction.
photo: ‘Mousey’ by Ikayama