Gospel Workers 1915

91/246

Visiting Homes

When a minister has presented the gospel message from the pulpit, his work is only begun. There is personal work for him to do. He should visit the people in their homes, talking and praying with them in earnestness and humility. There are families who will never be reached by the truths of God's word unless the stewards of His grace enter their homes and point them to the higher way. But the hearts of those who do this work must throb in unison with the heart of Christ. GW 187.1

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.” [Luke 14:23.] Let ministers teach the truth in families, drawing close to those for whom they labor; and as they thus co-operate with God, He will clothe them with spiritual power. Christ will guide them in their work, giving them words to speak that will sink deep into the hearts of the listeners. GW 187.2

It is the privilege of every minister to be able to say with Paul, “I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God.” “I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have showed you, and have taught you publicly, and from house to house, ...repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.” [Acts 20:27, 20, 21.] GW 188.1

Our Saviour went from house to house, healing the sick, comforting the mourners, soothing the afflicted, speaking peace to the disconsolate. He took the little children in His arms and blessed them and spoke words of hope and comfort to the weary mothers. With unfailing tenderness and gentleness, He met every form of human woe and affliction. Not for Himself, but for others did He labor. He was the servant of all. It was His meat and drink to bring hope and strength to all with whom He came in contact. And as men and women listened to the truths that fell from His lips, so different from the traditions and dogmas taught by the rabbis, hope sprang up in their hearts. In His teaching there was an earnestness that sent His words home with convicting power. GW 188.2

To my ministering brethren I would say, By personal labor reach the people where they are. Become acquainted with them. This work cannot be done by proxy. Money loaned or given cannot accomplish it. Sermons from the pulpit cannot do it. Teaching the Scriptures in families,—this is the work of an evangelist, and this work is to be united with preaching. If it is omitted, the preaching will be, to a great extent, a failure. GW 188.3

Those who are seeking for truth need to have words spoken to them in season; for Satan is speaking to them by his temptations. If you meet with repulse when trying to help souls, heed it not. If there seems to be little good resulting from your work, do not become discouraged. Keep working; be discreet; know when to speak, and when to keep silent; watch for souls as they that must give an account; and watch for the devices of Satan, lest you be led aside from duty. Do not allow difficulties to dishearten or intimidate you. With strong faith, with intrepid purpose, meet and overcome these difficulties. Sow the seed in faith, and with an unsparing hand. GW 188.4

*****

Much depends upon the manner in which you meet those whom you visit. You can take hold of a person's hand in greeting in such a way as to gain his confidence at once, or in so cold a manner that he will think you have no interest in him. GW 189.1

We should not act as if it were a condescension to come in contact with the poor. They are as precious in God's sight as we are, and we must act as if we thought them so. Our clothing should be plain and simple, so that when we visit the poor, they will not be embarrassed by the contrast between our appearance and their own. The joy that comes to the poor is often very limited, and why should not God's workers carry rays of light into their homes? We need the tender sympathy of Jesus; then we can win our way to hearts. GW 189.2