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PRAY & OBEY!--By Maria       DO1935       11/84
Maria 26

       1. ON IMPORTANT BASIC PRINCIPLES, THE ANSWERS ARE USUALLY CLEAR CUT OR THE LEADER GETS A DIRECT REVELATION FROM THE LORD. BUT ON MATTERS OF LESSER IMPORTANCE DAD HAS ALWAYS SAID THAT LEADERS NEED TO PRAY & COUNSEL TOGETHER WHEN MAKING DECISIONS, as "in the multitude of counselors there is safety" (Pro.11:14). This means that leaders need to get together to discuss the pros & cons of the various issues, & of course they may not always agree with one another as to what is the best thing to do. Whenever you have a number people together you'll often have a number of different opinions as to what should be done. It's at times like these you need to pray & ask the Lord to give you real wisdom & to help you avoid getting too pushy or into an argumentative spirit. You may feel your ideas are the best & therefore you may really push them to the point that you're actually arguing with others. I know that a lot of people have that problem, including myself, & Dad has had to deal with me because I tend to be that way.--I always have.

       2. OFTEN WHEN DAD PRESENTS A POSSIBLE COURSE OF ACTION I HAVE TO PRESENT THE OTHERSIDE & offer further facts which sometimes may be directly contrary to his proposal. I say, "Well, your idea is really good but there is this & that factor to consider." Dad doesn't mind at all when I offer other facts, as he wants to know the full situation, so he encourages me to offer my opinion. In fact, he's let me know that it's my responsibility to do so.

       3. LIKE ANY GOOD LEADER, DAD ASKS THOSE AROUND HIM FOR THEIR OPINIONS & SUGGESTIONS, & if we have any further facts, he wants to hear them in order to be aware of the overall picture before making the final decision. Our Family leaders should do the same, they should listen to one another & they should discuss the various facts & the different potential options. They should welcome opinions that are contrary to their own, so they can judge what option is best.

       4. YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO PRESENT YOUR SIDE OF THE PICTURE, THAT'S EXPECTED, you shouldn't just sit there & say nothing when you know some extra facts or other details or important information that might change the outcome. You need to present the facts so the decision can be made based on all the information that is available. That's what we often have to do with Dad, as he doesn't have time to read every report that comes in, so in some cases he will give us a general idea of what would be a good course of action, but he's open for adaptation or amendment or change. Sometimes we have to inform him of other facts which might slightly change the picture & which even sometimes change it completely.--And he welcomes this extra information & counsel!

       5. THE PROBLEM COMES WHEN YOU BECOME TOO PUSHY & ARGUMENTATIVE IN PRESENTING THE FACTS AS YOU TRY TO GET ACROSS YOUR POINT OF VIEW. A lot of times it's just your desire to see things done properly & you want the right thing to happen, but if you start pushing & really aggressively advocating your side, then it becomes a lack of faith. You're afraid that the decision that's being made is not the right one & you're afraid of it, so you start pushing your point of view! More often than not you've already presented your views & they were already considered, so you don't need to bring them up anymore, but you do anyway because you feel a wrong decision is being made. That's when it's a lack of faith, because you don't have the faith that what has been decided or what is about to be decided is right. Sometimes we think the decision is a little bit wrong & we think that, according to the facts we have, it won't work out & this isn't the right thing to do, but that's when we just need to have the faith that it's the Lord's work & He knows what He's doing & if it isn't the right decision, then we need to trust that He'll work is out somehow.

       6. OF COURSE IT'S MUCH EASIER TO HAVE FAITH IN DAD'S DECISIONS THAN IT IS TO HAVE FAITH IN CO-WORKERS' & OTHER LEADERS' DECISIONS because you know that Dad's the Lord's anointed & he's the Prophet of God & he's not going to make any major mistakes. But it's a little harder to have the same faith in the decision of your co-workers & local leaders, as although you know they are anointed for their job, you don't have the faith that they're as infallible as Dad because you know they make mistakes & they're sometimes unwise. A lot of times you may even know better than they do, so sometimes it's hard to have faith in their decisions, & that's when you need to trust that it's the Lord's work & that He will take care of things.

       7. I THINK THAT USUALLY THE PEOPLE WE'RE WORKING TOGETHER WITH & THE LEADERSHIP THAT THE FAMILY ALL OVER THE WORLD ARE WORKING TOGETHER WITH ARE PRETTY SINCERE & really want to do the Lord's will, so we need to have the faith that the Lord's going to lead & guide them, or at least that He'll stop them if they're about to make any wrong moves or even if they do make the wrong moves. We need to pray that the Lord will eventually show them if they're wrong & that He will keep anything too drastic from happening as a result.

       8. ON THE OTHER HAND, YOU DO HAVE THE RESPONSIBILITY TO GIVE YOUR OPINION if you're involved & if it's your business to present your ideas & to say what you think should be done. If you think they're making a mistake, then you have a responsibility to say so. If you feel your superior is making a wrong decision, then you should question it in a nice loving manner. You shouldn't say, "You're wrong! I think you're making a mistake," but rather something like, "Don't you think maybe we should consider the possibility of doing it this way?" or "Perhaps we should consider this other alternative."

       9. YOU SHOULD AT LEAST UNBURDEN YOUR HEART & GIVE YOUR SIDE OF THE STORY & the way you think it should be done. However, you must remember that they are the superior leaders & they're the ones that have to make the final decision, & when you have done all you can do, then it's not your place to continue to push & nag & argue for your point of view. And when they have definitely heard the answer from the Lord, that should end any further controversy.

       10. IF AFTER YOU HAVE GIVEN YOUR POINT OF VIEW & A DECISION IS MADE WHICH IS CONTRARY TO THE WAY YOU THINK THINGS OUGHT TO BE DONE, THEN THE BEST THING IS TO BE QUIET! If you think they're wrong, then you can pray that they'll realise it & they'll change or they'll change their mind or something will happen that will change things. But you still have to have faith that even if they do make the wrong decisions that it's the Lord's work, & as a whole, it isn't going to suffer & the Lord's going to have His way & some good will come out of it.

       11. IT'S SOMEWHAT LIKE THE SITUATION BEFORE THE RNR WHEN THE CHAIN WAS IN CONTROL: A lot of people realised that many of the things the Chain leaders were doing were very wrong. They knew from Dad's sample in the Letters that obviously you shouldn't be cruel to people & you shouldn't keep them out long hours on the street & demand high taxes, etc. The Family had the Letters & the Letters showed that you should be kind & compassionate to people, which by contrast made it obvious that the way the Chain acted was wrong. By the same token, however, the people that realised this were wrong in not presenting their side of it to us or to them. If they did present it to their Chain leaders & there was no response & no action, then if they thought it was really that wrong & if they felt what was going on was a serious situation, then they should have reported it to us instead of just sitting there taking it.

       12. IT WAS THEIR RESPONSIBILITY TO TELL US, ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY SAW OTHER PEOPLE BEING STUMBLED & BACKSLIDING BECAUSE OF IT & IN SOME CASES BACKSLIDING THEMSELVES. They should have tried to do something about it! If it's that bad & you face somebody with it, if you don't get any action & you think it's a really serious situation, then you should try to get help from somebody else, but while you're waiting for help you shouldn't have a mutiny & refuse to cooperate with the leadership. If no help comes, you're going to have to trust the Lord. If you're convinced that it's the Lord's work, then you need to have faith that sometime, somewhere, the situation is going to be straightened out & that the Lord is using it in some way for His glory, even though it may not look like it. Even though many things were really bad in the Chain days, there was still a lot accomplished, a lot of lit got out, even if it was almost by coercion, in many cases. The lit got out all over the World & the Lord really blessed it, so some good came of it. Then finally the Lord knew that it was enough & He changed things. Of course that was an extreme case.

       13. IN MOST CASES, THE LEADERSHIP TODAY REALLY LOVE THE LORD, THEY LOVE THE WORK, THEY LOVE THE SHEEP & THEY HOPEFULLY AREN'T GOING TO MAKE DECISIONS THAT ARE CRUEL & UNJUST. If they do make mistakes, it is more likely due to a mistake of the mind or misinterpretations or maybe not having enough wisdom about things. Normally the Lord will work it out & you just have to have faith that it's all the Lord's work & He'll take care of it some way or the other. Of course, if it gets too hard or is very serious, you're obligated to speak up, & if you don't get any action, then go to a higher authority. But I think you'll find that in most cases, if you really pray, the Lord will usually take care of it by either showing you that your leader's decision was right or by showing the leader that his decision was not the best.

       14. BUT YOU NEED TO BE CAREFUL ABOUT ARGUING, because if you start arguing, even it you think it's for a good motive, you open yourself up to the Enemy & you get that feeling of pride & self-righteousness. You're so certain that you're right & you feel they should listen to you because you know what's right & you know better than they do. Once you start argumentatively pushing your point, then you usually get that proud feeling. You feel like you need to prove that the other person is wrong & that you are right. In your pride you want to be right so you push & needle & nag & usually make the other person upset. So instead of arguing you should just trust the Lord that He will take care of any seeming mistakes.

       15. OF COURSE, ON THE OTHER HAND, THE LEADER WHO IS IN CHARGE SHOULD BE WILLING TO CONSIDER THE VARIOUS POINTS OF VIEW in order to base the decision on good, well-rounded counsel. The superior officer should be willing to change his decision if he finds that it wasn't the right choice after all. But if you don't agree with your superior officer & he doesn't agree with the counsel you've given, then it's your place just pray & obey. (--Amen?)

Copyright (c) 1998 by The Family