Thursday, March 4th, 2010
"Your eyes must become eyes seeing your Grand Instructor." (Isaiah 30:20)
You have likely had experiences that convinced you of God’s personal interest in you, which strengthened your faith. Perhaps Jehovah proved himself to be in some way a Provider, a Comforter, or a Teacher. (Isaiah 30:21) Or you may have sensed a clear answer to a prayer. You might have been facing a challenge, and then a fellow Christian provided help. Or personal study may have brought appropriate scriptures to your attention. Yes, Jehovah proved to be just what he needed to be for you. Think back on your years in the truth. Can you recall more than one occasion when you felt Jehovah’s personal care in your life? If so, remembering those events and how they made you feel can stimulate in your heart the same feelings of love for Jehovah that you felt back then. Treasure those experiences. Meditate upon them. They are proof that Jehovah is interested in you personally.
(Watchtower issue: 6/15/08, 4:9, 10)
This is an interesting discussion, because even during Jesus' earthly ministry you can see evidence of him reflecting his Father's personality in this regard, by the indivdual attention and help he gave to people who made requests of him or came to him to be healed. For instance, the account of the army officer (who had unusually strong faith), at Matthew 8:5-13, where Jesus listened to the man's request because of the strong faith he had, despite the fact that it wasn't the typical way Jesus healed people in other instances. And there's many more examples in the Bible showing how Jehovah has dealt with his servants on an individual basis, coming to their aid with regard to their unique needs or circumstances.
It's also very interesting how God not only answers prayers or provides guidance *quickly* or in shorter time frames, when necessary,...but how, even more often, he assists faithful individuals and answers their prayers over an extended period of time (which I personally find even more faith strengthening, than isolated instances that could be seen by others as a mere coincidence)...Because when you look back over the history and lives of his people as a group (and individually), there are so many situations where you can really see how Jehovah's been orchestrating events in the backround over many decades in order to fulfill a promise or provide the answer to a prayer (which may not have even been entirely fulfilled during the person's lifetime) -such as in the case with certain Biblical figures like Naomi and Ruth (featured in this weeks Bible reading).
In fact, I found one of my grandpa's old books from 1932, (with an indepth discussion of the books of Ruth and Esther), and it's so fascinating. There is so much symbolism and prophetic references woven throughout those books that I never knew before. It makes you look at those accounts in an entirely new light which adds to the conviction you have in God's future promises, because you can see that there's a much deeper meaning underneath the surface. I'm not sure how much has changed (as far as any *new understandings* are concerned), but even if the explanations aren't completely up-to-date, I still love reading the old books because they are so *meaty* =)
(BTW - I'll do a post later with "Highlights from the Book of Ruth")
And when it comes to more modern day examples, you can also see how Jehovah has been answering the prayers of his servants, such as in the case of Brother Harold King and his missionary assignment in China. I listened to an old talk given by him, describing the ministry work there in more recent years, and his prison experiences when he was sentenced to solitary confinement for all those years (after WWII in Communist China), and you can see how his prayers were answered in a more long-range way throughout his lifetime, including the story of how he met his wife. =) And just think about all the "fruitage" and growth that's taken place since that time when he first began sowing spiritual seeds of truth in Hong Kong.
I'll upload it, but the sound isn't that great, so I might try to find a better recording first.