Service to God – an Inestimable Blessing

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Alaska Baha’i Community was richly blessed, over several decades and on many occasions, by visits of the Hands of the Cause of God. These dear souls were appointed by the Guardian of the Faith, Shoghi Effendi, in accordance with the provisions of the Will and Testament of ‘Abdu’l-Baha. Our beloved Guardian identified them as servants of Baha’u’llah who showed extraordinary devotion to the service of God and who held great capacity for spreading the Word of God, encouraging the followers of Baha’u’llah and safeguarding them as they struggled to advance their Cause.

They are an example to us of the ability that each of us has to consecrate ourselves to service to God. Few of us, of course, are able to so fully devote ourselves to this service. We need to earn a living and support ourselves and our families. Each of us, however, can make a personal decision to service by whatever means are open to us according to our circumstances. During the last ten years, this has become easier than ever. We no longer have to think about what to do, but rather, how to go about it, because today we have a convenient roadmap to guide us along our spiritual path of service. Our beloved Universal House of Justice, in consultation with the Counselors at the International Teaching Centre and others, have given us this map.

Our objective is to reach out to those in our community who believe as we do, those who are looking for what we have found and yearn to enter in the Ark of the Covenant of Baha’u’llah, if they but knew that it existed and understood its world redeeming, evolutionizing and revolutionizing implications.  This is a sacred task for us, and we accomplish it by training and raising up enough committed Baha’is in every locality who have the skills to effectively carry forward this teaching work and maintain the effort on an on-going basis. We reach out to our friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers and invite their participation in our activities. Here is what we do:

Devotional Meetings. Regular meetings in homes where people can gather informally over prayers, spiritual writings, and music, and enjoy one another’s company. It’s a great way to meet new people and make new friends.

Study Circles. Meetings to study an established course of spiritual subjects and to give participants the skills, through practice, to tell others about the Baha’i Faith. The sequence of courses is called Ruhi, and any particular Study Circle is scheduled according to the interests of the participants. 

Children’s Classes and Junior Youth Activities. Programs designed to bring children and young people together in activities that allow them to develop socially and spiritually. The future of humankind will only be as good as the spiritual qualities instilled into children and youth. 

Firesides. Informal meetings at the homes of Baha’is where pople can socialize and discuss diverse topics of interest without any formal agenda.

As we continue in our efforts to reach out to our friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers, we will increasingly win victories for God.

“O Lord! Assist those who have renounced all else but Thee, and grant them a mighty victory. Send down upon them, O Lord, the concourse of the angels in the heaven and earth and all that is between, to aid Thy servants, to succor and strengthen them, to enable them to achieve success, to sustain them, to invest them with glory, to confer upon them honor and exaltation, to enrich them and to make them triumphant with a wondrous triumph.” Baha’u’llah

“Should such a man ever succeed in influencing any one, this success should be attributed not to him, but rather to the influence of the words of God, as decreed by Him Who is the Almighty, the All-Wise. In the sight of God he is regarded as a lamp that imparteth its light, and yet is all the while being consumed within itself.” Baha’u’llah

“Success or failure, gain or loss, must, therefore, depend upon man’s own exertions. The more he striveth, the greater will be his progress. We fain would hope that the vernal showers of the bounty of God may cause the flowers of true understanding to spring from the soil of men’s hearts, and may wash them from all earthly defilements.” Baha’u’llah

“Success will crown the efforts of the friends on the home front when they meditate on the teaching, pray fervently for divine confirmations for their work, study the teachings so they may carry the spirit to the seeker, and then act, — and above all persevere in action.” Shoghi Effendi

Photos by Blaine Reed of Hands of the Cause of God during visits to Alaska

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