You could never offend me. It takes someone like Stephen Beecroft to do
Anyway, I think the problem lies in something that the sons of Mosiah
teach us. We see Ammon and Aaron in Alma 17 set off to different parts
amongst the Lamanites. Ammon finds Lamoni and offers to be a servant,
makes friends, and converts thousands. Aaron and the others immediately
go into telling the Lamanites what they are doing wrong, offend them, and
are cast into prison. All were teaching the same truths, but the manner
in which they were doing it made all the difference in their success
level. Aaron obviously figured this one out, because when he went to the
father of Lamoni, the first thing he did was offer himself up as a
servant to the king. Only then was he also successful in bringing
thousands into the Church.
There is a time for bearing down in strong testimony. But Alma's counsel
was to be bold but NOT overbearing. Being overbearing can be as much a
fatal flaw in missionary work as being too timid.
It is usually when we become overbearing, that we begin to offend people
(like Aaron did), even though our intentions are good. The Spirit often
will guide us to a softer approach, one that the person we are speaking
to will listen to.
Gerald/gary Smith gszion1 @juno.com http://www
"No one is as hopelessly enslaved as the person who thinks he's free." -
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
I can see where you are coming from, Elmer. And you are probably right
that I need to be more humble. But after a while a guy gets tired of
misunderstood even though he is speaking the truth. Speaking the truth
should never prompt an argument and bad feelings. When I mean to point a
finger, and make things personal, then I'll let everyone know. Until
I recommend that those who might be offended read a little more carefully
and see if I have singled them out in mere paraphrasing the scriptures
the writings of the prophets. Usually they will find that I have not.
John W. Redelfs
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