THE PRACTICAL AND DETAILED WAY FOR DOOR-KNOCKING
There is a practical and detailed way to do anything, and as long as we copy it exactly, studying and practicing according to the pattern, we will be able to do the thing in the right way. Before we go out door-knocking, we must dress properly. Our appearance should not be too conservative, nor should it be too modern and stylish. Rather, it should be neat and proper, serious and appropriate. Even our hair must be brushed and tidy. If we do this, people will open their doors to us. Suppose three people are in a group to go out door-knocking; one is an American hippie with long hair and an unkempt beard, another one is a Taiwanese hoodlum with shoes but no socks, and the third one is a Hong Kong gangster holding a cigarette in his mouth and wearing a pair of dark glasses. When these three persons go out door-knocking, people will certainly be frightened and think that they are there to rob them or to do some other evil thing; they would definitely not open the door to them. But if the same three persons go out door-knocking with a clean and neat appearance, wearing proper clothing and walking in a proper way, then people will certainly open their doors and welcome them.
Practicing to build up a proper, neat character is the topic of a required course in our full-time training. The trainees are required to go to bed early and to get up early. Every morning they have to straighten their rooms and have morning watch, then they go out jogging for bodily exercise. Once the training center asked all the trainees to put their shoes outside their bedroom doors before they went to sleep. The seven hundred fifty trainees fearfully did as they were told. After the trainees had gone to sleep, the trainers came and polished their shoes until they were bright and shiny. The next morning after rising, the trainees saw that all their shoes were black and shiny; they were both touched and ashamed. Because of this kind of training, the character of the trainees has been gradually built up to the extent that they can gain others as soon as they go out. Therefore, if we want to participate in the hosts of Calvary to go out door-knocking to gain people, the first thing we must do is have a proper appearance.
Next, our attitude must be one of humility and courtesy. We need to be humble and courteous to people, especially in our speech. Therefore, the training also teaches us how to speak properly. Do not think that the training only teaches the skill of door-knocking. The training is mainly for teaching us what to say and what to do when preaching the gospel so that people will be open to receive. Thus, the first requirement is a neat appearance and the second is an attitude of humility and courtesy. These two things are outward matters.
Concerning the inward matters, the intrinsic thing is that when we go out door-knocking, we must pray first and we must pray thoroughly, confessing our sins, repenting, and being filled by the Lord. If we are not filled with the Lord inwardly but have only given ourselves a proper outward appearance, then we are only actors putting on a show with stage make-up, and what we do is not of any value. Therefore, we must have thorough prayer and be filled with the Lord inwardly, then we must have a proper outward appearance before we will be ready to go out door-knocking.
Moreover, we must learn how to coordinate together. We should never choose the ones with whom we coordinate. When the training or the church assigns the teams, we should not choose to be with the people we like. Usually when we go out door-knocking there are three people to a team with one elderly person, one middle-aged person, and one young person. The function of the elderly person is not to speak but to knock on the doors. This is very valuable. After the door has been opened, the young saint should open his mouth and introduce himself. After getting inside the door, the elderly saint is responsible for standing to the side to nod and smile in support, while the young brothers and sisters are responsible for explaining the truth. This seems to be the opposite of the worldly way, but it is very effective.
If a person gets saved and wants to be baptized, it is best for the elderly brother to pray and do the baptizing because he is weightier and more experienced. People will feel more at peace receiving it from him. But if there is an elderly sister present, she should help prepare the water and the clothing and just assist on the sidelines during the baptism. We must pay attention to all these little points. We should never think that it is all right to ignore them. They can have a great influence on what we are doing.
When the working saints go out door-knocking, they should mainly learn to speak. Do not speak your own words. Speak what the training teaches you to speak. Therefore, you must pay particular attention to the preaching and speaking of the trainees in order to learn from them. Furthermore, you should coordinate together to go into the houses, and to sit with people while they are listening, praying, and being baptized. Learn a few times and you will do well in the end.
(The Furtherance of the New Way for the Lord's Recovery, Chapter 4, by Witness Lee)