Believe or Not: Jehovah Compels

MINISTRY SCHOOL tonight, as always, includes one, two or more short scriptural talks within the typical hour and a  half schedule,

including demonstrations of effective witnessing, Bible Study conducting, parenting, question and answer discussions, along with

songs and videos. Not all in attendance, however, are ‘enrolled’, meaning: not all are given assignments to prepare and present

in front of the entire congregation. It is a voluntary activity on the part of the members considered the pillars of the congregation:

the Elders, ministerial servants, pioneers and/or the most knowledgeable or the most outgoing among us.

I have been a Pioneer for 5-6 years.

I was also transferred to a new congregation at the very beginning of the 2020 Pandemic– still a pioneer– but having to reorient myself

as a member of an entire new congregation framework, in which everyone could only get together on the internet meeting app Zoom.

Add to that the shock and awe of finding myself in the midst of a declared pandemic(COVID-19 virus), and I was content to just coast

along without signing up for Ministry School assignments, which I, as a pioneer, would be expected to eagerly do.

I was not eager.

I was preoccupied with the 1000 manifestations and events of the novel virus consuming my time, emotions and thoughts; it was

altogether more debilitating than I’d wanted to admit. So I studiously avoided contacting the school overseer. Nevertheless, as

it usually happens, an elder contacted me… substitute for a sister who had a dental emergency. Of course I said ‘of course’.

Accepting that assignment, however, probably meant that I was now unofficially a member of the school!

Or maybe not. Maybe the elders would consider me just filling in for someone who was signed up, which is what I considered it.

But indeed, the mysterious upside down tiny-font text arrived in my text messages—lacking a name as to who it was from—about a month

later: I was to give a two-person ‘witnessing’ demo  in six weeks.

Not only was I aghast at receiving it, but a little angry in the way I had received it: upside down, almost illegible and nameless.

I determined to ignore it; perhaps plead ignorance or that I’d received a mysterious text and deleted it and so was not prepared.

But I didn’t delete. Still, I didn’t intend to prepare the part either.

And then tonight, a brother gave a ‘Local Needs’ talk in which he so kindly and lovingly emphasized how much each member of the

congregation was valued in what they bring to the spiritual well-being of the whole….and actually, I can’t remember his exact words,

nor, to my shame, the wonderful scriptures he used.

I only remember being touched to the core and deeply ashamed of myself for all the aforementioned.

I resolved then and there to do the part….to do my part. No matter that I felt diminished by how it was relayed to me, Jehovah expected

better from me.

After I signed off from Zoom, I picked up my cellphone and opened the messages app in order to find that dorky text.

My eyes nearly popped out of their sockets–I actually did a double-take.

BELIEVE IT OR NOT, there was that dreaded dorky upside down text message right at the top—when it should have been

at least 50 messages down the line!

Jehovah, my God, I hear you. I’m humbled. Once again.


December 30, 2021