No Room For George - I wasn't trying to make any assumptions from your statement and I hate those that do that sort of thing. I respect everyone's beliefs so long as they are genuine. Can I assume that you feel comfortable evangelizing for the witnesses solely on the basis of them being a christian religion, and therefore you feel that you are leading them to Christ, and not to the FDS?
Do you subscribe to the idea of "where else shall we go?"
I'm not looking to pick a fight or disrespect anybody's sincere beliefs, I'm geninely interested in knowing your reasons, which I'm sure are well thought through.
Forgive me, I'm a little cranky this morning to be honest with you. Woke up on the wrong side of the bed today, and I apologize. I feel like Tool's Aenema right about now, feel like flushing the world out like a toilet.
As far as the "where else shall we go" question is concerned, my view on that goes back to what I mentioned before on uniformity, along with the WT's doctrine on Babylon the Great. No one individual or organization on this planet in my view has any lock on truth, nor any lock on the dispensing of "spiritual food", which by the way is a term I hate anymore. That being said, I believe a person should be able to go wherever his/her conscience sees fit without social pressure to remain in the organization and primarily at the risk of dividing and possibly losing their family over petty issues such as whether or not Christ died on an upright poll with or without a cross beam.
There's times I've run into people out on the street who weren't affiliated with any church, yet something they said to me gave me encouragement or a gem of wisdom. There's times on this message board, I've read things that have touched me. There's times I've heard a priest or another member of a denomination make a statement that gave me a little more oomph to get through the day. My point is, nobody has any exclusive market on spirtual encouragment in a choke hold. Jesus said, "who is the faithful and discreet slave" in the form of a parabel, not a prophecy. There was nothing exclusive in that illustration.
As far as your question on envangelizing goes, what makes me justify it is this. When I go out there, where I can, I'll try to encourage someone and it does happen occasionally that you'll run into people who are going through things, situations in life where they need to get things off of their chest or need to hear something upbuilding, particulary in poorer neighborhoods. Many of these people already consider themselves Christians, so on that end of things they often can relate to something a JW might share with them from the Bible, or even in the literature. In that sense, I agree with the WT's encouragment of field service to assist other people who could benefit from a kind word or two from the Bible, and heck that's following Christ's example. As far as potential converts are concerned, that's not happening, I couldn't tell you the last time I saw someone convert, at least thats my experiences from being here in the States. Maybe in the foreign fields, and other countries, the WT may be experiencing growth, but here in Western lands, I don't see it. So when I go out in field service, I view it as a combination of it being a mere formality to simply show face, with the possibility of doing something good on behalf of a complete stranger.