Updated: Mar 8, 2021
Suggesting a plan or a schedule of reading–It is easier for people to receive a burden when in our presentation we break the matter down for them and show them how easy it is to enter in. We need to speak to the saints in terms of minutes or pages. We can suggest that a brother who is working all day can take 10 minutes during his lunch break and 10 minutes in the evening to read a few pages of a message. In this way he would be able to finish one or two messages a week. Or we can suggest for a sister who is home with her children to read 2 pages in the morning some time when her children are at school of her baby is sleeping and another 2 pages in the afternoon and 2 pages in the evening. Reading 6 pages a day, she would be able to finish a message in two or three days. One could read an entire book in two weeks or an entire Life-study in two months. The saints must be helped to see that this is doable and practical and practicable. Of course, for those who have more heart we can suggest more each day.
Habit and taste–Mostly we need to help the saints start slowly and build up a habit. The habit is the most important matter. Once the saints realize that they have time they will be able to practice and build up a habit. Then as they read they will develop the taste for the ministry. On early every page of the ministry literature we receive the dispensing of life. This will feed and supply the saints. Then a cycle will develop. Habit brings taste and taste strengthens the habit.
Speaking what we enjoy–If we encourage the saints to speak what they enjoy in the few pages that they read, whether in the church meetings or home meetings or in one-on-one personal fellowship or between the husbands and wives, this will enrich their enjoyment. They will encourage each other to continue reading. And some who are not reading may be inspired to begin reading more regularly because they will realize that they are missing out on much blessing.
Reading companions–Having a reading companion may strengthen us very much. Having a companion gives us accountability. It sometimes forces us to read because we agreed with our companion that we would read a certain message this week. Sometimes all the saints in a small group meeting can agree together to read one message per week. But whatever we do, we must remember to not be too ambitious or the saints will get discouraged and drop out.
Personal shepherding–In addition to sharing something during a training or conference, we need to shepherd the saints under our care into the habit of reading the literature. It would be good if all of the responsible brothers had this habit first and then that they all be helped to see that we can shepherd people with the literature. When the saints ask us for fellowship we can share a little with them and then recommend a certain book for them to read. And we can help the saints under our care to begin a schedule of reading as mentioned above.
Little by little–As much as a labor a struggle we find that most of the time we are not able to bring all the saints into the burden, so we should realize that this is a long term burden and help people little by little. When we share this burden in the training or conference maybe 10-20 saints will pick it up for the long term. Others will respond but not be able to continue. But these 10-20 will have some effect on others little by little. Then the next time we share the burden maybe another 10-20 will be brought in. And so on. Eventually I believe that many saints could be helped in this matter.