Is "failure" more interesting than success?
01/27/2006. Journal entry. I've noticed in my sitemeter.com tracking service, that of the visitors who come to my blog via ldsblogs.org and LDselect.org, they more often come in to read instances where my offer of a Book of Mormon was declined than instances where the person accepted my offer of a book.
(Note: in my blog titles where I write "[Language] declined", that's my shorthand for "my offer of a Book of Mormon in [Language] was declined."
There was an article in the February 2005 Ensign (or here), entitled "Seven Lessons on Sharing the Gospel," about how every offer of a pass-along card or a Book of Mormon, every invitation to hear the missionaries, every invitation to visit church is a success. The mere act of making an offer, or extending an invitation, is in itself a successful act. An opportunity was successfully provided to someone. The offer or invitation is in itself a testimony. So if an offer or invitation is made, then a testimony has been successfully borne. Not all testimonies have to start out with "I know that..."
Offers and invitations, along with formal "I know/believe that..." testimonies, are seeds. They create memories in the minds and souls of those who hear them. Then, at any time in the future, whether on this side of the veil or the other, those memories are things that the Holy Ghost can bring to remembrance in that person when the time is right for that person.
That verse in John 14:26 talks about what Jesus said. And today, we are the mouthpieces of Jesus Christ. We are to say what Jesus would say. We are to make the offers and invitations that Jesus would make.
When we do and say what Jesus would do and say, I'd call that a success.