Elders – Sometimes Thoughtless

//Elders – Sometimes Thoughtless

Wednesday, August 19

There exists the one speaking thoughtlessly as with the stabs of a sword, but the tongue of the wise ones is a healing.Prov. 12:18.

We need to ‘encourage one another all the more as we behold the day drawing near.’ Encouraging others involves motivating them to continue moving forward in their service to God. Just as inciting to love and fine works can be likened to stirring up a fire that is about to go out, encouraging others can be likened to putting fuel on the fire to keep it burning or to increase its intensity. Encouraging others calls for strengthening and comforting the downhearted. When given an opportunity to encourage such a person, we must speak in a warm and gentle manner. Moreover, let us “be swift about hearing” and “slow about speaking.”  If we listen empathetically, we may be able to identify situations that discourage a fellow Christian and say something to help him deal with those circumstances.

Commentary 

There is no question that many of Jehovah’s Witnesses are heavily burdened with life’s anxieties. Clinical depression is affecting more and more people in general in our modern world and Jehovah’s Witnesses are not immune. There is a great need for encouragement. Elders should absolutely know the appearance of their flock and take into consideration such things as depression and other mental illnesses.

Unfortunately, my sister-in-law experienced firsthand how an elder can speak thoughtlessly as with the stabs of the sword. For years she has struggled with bipolar and depression. She works full time and is the mother of a handicapped son and the wife of an emotionally crippled alcoholic. She has struggled to keep up with meeting attendance and field service carrying such a burden. One day an elder approached her after having reviewed her publisher card and told her that apparently she didn’t love Jehovah very much because she didn’t put very much time into her ministry. The elder may have thought he was encouraging her. The result, though, was my sister-in-law left the kingdom hall and never returned. ‘What’s the point?’ she reasoned. 

These are the things for which Jehovah will ultimately require an accounting. 

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2016-12-08T15:11:18+00:00 August 19th, 2015|Commentary|6 Comments
  • wish i had words today to describe this

    • The Raven

      For you and all those who are sad and suffering:

      Psalms
      To the director. A melody of David.
      31 In you, O Jehovah, I have taken refuge.+
      May I never be put to shame.+
      Rescue me because of your righteousness.+
      2 Incline your ear* to me.
      Come quickly to my rescue.+
      Become for me a mountain stronghold,
      A fortified place to save me.+
      3 For you are my crag and my stronghold;+
      For the sake of your name,+ you will lead me and guide me.+
      4 You will free me from the net that they have secretly laid for me,+
      For you are my fortress.+
      5 Into your hand I entrust my spirit.+
      You have redeemed me, O Jehovah, the God of truth.*+
      6 I hate those who are devoted to worthless, vain idols,
      But as for me, I trust in Jehovah.
      7 I will rejoice greatly in your loyal love,
      For you have seen my affliction;+
      You are aware of my deep distress.*
      8 You have not handed me over to the enemy,
      But you make me stand in a place of safety.*
      9 Show me favor, O Jehovah, for I am in distress.
      Anguish has made my eyes weak,+ my whole body* as well.+
      10 My life is consumed with grief+
      And my years with groaning.+
      My strength is waning because of my error;
      My bones grow weak.+
      11 I am scorned by all my adversaries,+
      Especially my neighbors.
      And I am dreaded by my acquaintances;
      When they see me in public, they flee from me.+
      12 I am put out of their heart* and forgotten, as if I were dead;
      I am like a broken jar.
      13 I have heard many evil rumors;
      Terror surrounds me.+
      When they gather together as one against me,
      They scheme to take away my life.*+
      14 But I trust in you, O Jehovah.+
      I declare: “You are my God.”+
      15 My days* are in your hand.
      Rescue me from the hand of my enemies and from those persecuting me.+
      16 Make your face shine upon your servant.+
      Save me by your loyal love.
      17 O Jehovah, may I not be put to shame when I call on you.+
      May the wicked be put to shame;+
      May they be silenced in the Grave.*+
      18 May lying lips become speechless,+
      Lips that speak arrogantly against the righteous, with haughtiness and contempt.
      19 How abundant your goodness is!+
      You have stored it up for those who fear you,+
      And you have shown it before all men, in behalf of those taking refuge in you.+
      20 You will conceal them in the secret place of your presence+
      From the schemes of men;
      You will hide them in your shelter
      From malicious attacks.*+
      21 May Jehovah be praised,
      For in a wonderful way, he has shown his loyal love to me+ in a besieged city.+
      22 As for me, I panicked and said:
      “I will perish from before you.”+
      But you heard my pleas for help when I cried out to you.+
      23 Love Jehovah, all you who are loyal to him!+
      Jehovah protects the faithful,+
      But he repays exceedingly anyone showing haughtiness.+
      24 Be courageous, and may your heart be strong,+
      All you who are waiting for Jehovah.+

      • https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/bf0b866ca9a1971da8bfc83e93ce056245c830abc0c7e6e3c260dbe55b989f0f.jpg

        thats because Robert’s changed the site several times or done maintenance. i hate it personally when comments get deleted

        • The Raven

          I see. Yes, that could sometimes be a problem when researching certain things. But since I don’t plow through stuff like that unless it’s a comment Kevin pointed out to me I can’t say it’s affected me much. He keeps me very busy at times. lol!

        • The Raven

          When was the last time he did maintenance? Most of the articles I’ve found with no comments were from before I arrived, if I’m not mistaken. Others from years ago are in two different fonts and I have to dig out my 3.00 reading glasses just to see them.

          • i dont remember. time flys. the time he inserted Disqus as a comment tool? if i remember right or when he moved the commentary around last. also separated the book its own site. cant remember. i was archiving everything so i have older comments archived too but i slowly stopped doing that after bad circumstances over a year ago. older Updates from the Updates page got deleted too and the forum changed a couple times deleting comments

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