Winning Families

To Pray and Study With Families—While the minds of many are stirred and convicted of the truth, the interest should be followed up by wise, earnest, and persevering labor.... The call is for men who will go forth imbued with the Spirit of Christ, and work for souls. The minister should not confine his labors to the desk, nor should he settle down in some pleasant home among the brethren. He must watch for souls. He must visit the people at their homes, and by personal efforts seek to impress the truth upon hearts and consciences. He must pray with families and hold Bible readings with them. While with tact and wisdom he urges home upon his fellow men their duty to obey the Word of God, his daily intercourse with them should reveal whatever in his character is good and pure, excellent and lovely, kind and courteous. Ev 435.1

In the messages of the first and second angels, the work was done in this manner. Men and women were moved to search the Scriptures, and they called the attention of others to the truths revealed. It was personal labor for individuals and families that gave these messages their wonderful success.—The Review and Herald, January 27, 1885. Ev 435.2

Some Families Reached Only Within Homes—There are families who will never be reached by the truth of God's Word unless His servants enter their homes, and by earnest ministry, sanctified by the indorsement of the Holy Spirit, break down the barriers. As the people see that these workers are messengers of mercy, the ministers of grace, they are ready to listen to the words spoken by them.... Ev 435.3

When such a worker offers prayer to God in the family where he is visiting, the hearts of the members are touched as they would not be by prayer offered in a public assembly. Angels of God enter the family circle with him; and the minds of the hearers are prepared to receive the Word of God: for if the messenger is humble and contrite, if he has a living connection with God, the Holy Spirit takes the Word, and shows it to those for whom he is laboring.... Ev 436.1

The Lord desires that the truth shall come close to the people, and this can be accomplished only by personal labor. Much is comprehended in the command, “Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that My house may be filled.” There is a work to be done in this line that has not yet been done. Let God's workers teach the truth in families, drawing close to those for whom they labor. If they thus co-operate with God, He will clothe them with spiritual power. Christ will guide them in their work, entering the houses of the people with them, and giving them words to speak that will sink deep into the hearts of the listeners. The Holy Spirit will open hearts and minds to receive the rays coming from the source of all light.—The Review and Herald, December 29, 1904. Ev 436.2

Find the Way to the Heart—To all who are working with Christ I would say, Wherever you can gain access to the people by the fireside, improve your opportunity. Take your Bible, and open before them its great truths. Your success will not depend so much upon your knowledge and accomplishments, as upon your ability to find your way to the heart. By being social and coming close to the people, you may turn the current of their thoughts more readily than by the most able discourse. The presentation of Christ in the family, by the fireside, and in small gatherings in private houses, is often more successful in winning souls to Jesus than are sermons delivered in the open air, to the moving throng, or even in halls or churches. Ev 436.3

All who engage in this personal labor should be just as careful not to become mechanical in their manner of working as should the minister who preaches the Word. They should be constantly learning. They should have a conscientious zeal to obtain the highest qualifications, to become men able in the Scriptures.—Gospel Workers, 193 (1915). Ev 437.1

Two and Two in Personal Work—There should always be two and two of our brethren to go out together, and then as many more as they can rally to engage in the work of visiting and seeking to interest families, making personal efforts.—Letter 34, 1886. Ev 437.2

Minister and Wife—Keep on the track of souls. Show tact and skill when visiting families. Pray with them and for them. Bear the truth to them in great tenderness and love, and returns will surely come. If the minister and his wife can jointly engage in this work, they should do so.—Letter 18, 1898. Ev 437.3