BulletinGold #132
December 2011   Vol 11 #10

BulletinGold #132
December 2011
Vol. 11 Num. 10
David Bragg
Edward Thomason
BulletinGold is published the first Sunday of each month to help Church of Christ bulletin editors and writers share Bible-based, doctrinal material for church bulletins and Christian writing. You received BulletinGold because you subscribed. If you received this copy from a friend and would like to subscribe, please send a blank email to: BulletinGold-subscribe@yahoogroups.com Be sure and reply to the letter sent to your email by YahooGroups. If you need to unsubscribe, you may do so by sending an email to: BulletinGold-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
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In This Issue:
- Putting Love Into Words, Don Loftis
- Stir Up One Another, Clifton Angel
- Eating Meals  Together—Not As Tough As We Might Think, Don Loftis
- Get All The Facts, Larry Pasley
- Scriptural Giving, Larry Fluitt
- One Little Wire! By Kevin Williams
- True Christmas Spirit
- THANKS INDEED, J. Randal Matheny
- How Sweet His Way, Robert F. Lowery
quotes & sayings for bulletins and signs

New Postings At
Editorial by David Bragg
    As yet another year comes to a close and we are very thankful for all who have supported BulletinGold, whether by subscribing, submitting content, or reproducing this material in local church bulletins.
    Due to space limitations,
many items are simply too long to include in our newsletter. Be sure to check out this "overflow" content at our blog: BulletinGold Extra

David Bragg
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Panning for Gold Feature Articles:
Putting Love Into Words
By Don Loftis

    As we journey through life, we often fail to tell others how much they really mean to us. This is especially true with those we are closest to. This may occur, because we are too busy or find it difficult to deal with emotional language. It may be that we feel others already know our feelings. You may recall Reba McIntyre’s song about a young lady and her distant relationship with her father who had just died. The song says, “He never told me he loved me; I guess he thought I knew.” Unspoken love or admiration is often never perceived.
    One week prior to his death at the First Battle of Bull Run, Major Sullivan Ballou wrote to his wife Sarah, “My love for you is deathless. If I do not return my dear Sarah, never forget how much I loved you nor that when my last breath escapes me on the battlefield, it will whisper your name.” What comfort that letter must have been!
    Maybe a bit less more poetic, but just as powerful was the note left behind by Randy McCloy, the lone survivor of the recent Sago Mine disaster. Just hours before he thought that he would die, he wrote to his family, “Anna, I love you so much. To my son, trust in the Lord. To my daughter, stay sweet.” Though he lived, this note must continue to be viewed as a priceless declaration of love.
    It is imperative that we take the time and struggle to find the words to convey our love. Whether it is delivered by mail, over the phone, or face-to-face, these affirmations of our love cement relationships and provide great strength in times of adversity. To whom do you need to express your feelings of love? Is it a parent? A child? Your mate? A close friend? Whoever it is, today is the day for action. Let’s put our love into words.

- Don Loftis; via The Family Friend, a monthly newsletter published by the Calvert City church of Christ, Calvert City, KY.  It is an excellent resource for articles relating to the family.  To learn more consult the congregation's website: http://www.calvertchurchofchrist.com

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Stir Up One Another
By Clifton Angel

     I love to boil a cup of water, toss in one-half cup of quick oats from Wal-mart, and mix it all into a bowl with two teaspoons of brown sugar and a teaspoon of butter! As I prepared my delicious breakfast just the other morning, I was reminded of the effects of stirring.
     Several years ago, I learned that stirring water, while applying heat, provides for a rise (growth) in the normal boiling point of 212 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, adding salt will increase the same effect. As I prepared my oatmeal, such effects led me to think about the concept of stirring one another within the church.
     Peter wrote, Wherefore I will not be negligent to put you always in remembrance of these things, though ye know them, and be established in the present truth. Yea, I think it meet, as long as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by putting you in remembrance (2 Peter 1:12, 13). He wrote further, This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance (2 Peter 3:1). Certainly, God’s Word can and will stir us to provide opportunity for growth in our Christian lives! However, we have to hear it (Rom. 10:17)!
     Furthermore, on this subject, we find the words of the Hebrews writer, Let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works (Heb. 10:24). The NKJV records, Let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, and the ESV states, Let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works. When we stir one another, we provoke one another in a positive manner: unto love and good works. May we stir more so that we can do more!

- Clifton Angel preaches for the Coldwater church of Christ in Coldwater, MS. He may be contacted through that congregation's website: http://www.coldwatercofc.com/

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Eating Meals  Together—Not As Tough As We Might Think
By Don Loftis

    Research continues to underscore the value of families eating meals together. A TIME magazine article noted: “Studies show that the more often families eat together, the less likely kids are to smoke, drink, do drugs, get depressed, develop eating disorders, and consider suicide, and the more likely they are to do well in school, delay having sex, eat their vegetables, learn big words, and know which fork to use.” If such ‘sit-down” moments seem impossible to you, or increase familial guilt, let me  remind you of two things.
    First, the menu and the  décor are not as  important as spending time  together talking. The key is not so much what we eat (nutrition is another article), but what we do while we eat it. Made-from-scratch, micro-waved, or carry-out meals may all be effectively used at the table.
    Secondly, there are tools available to simplify menu design, grocery shopping, and preparation in advance. Leanne Ely has authored a book entitled Saving Dinner in which she provides six dinner ideas a week, provides you the recipes for each entrée, and even compiles a shopping list for all the ingredients. Check out SavingDinner.com for more information.
    Spouses need to spend time eating together as well. That is why date nights and coffee together are important marriage builders.

- Don Loftis, Old Hickory, TN; via The Family Friend, a monthly newsletter published by the Calvert City church of Christ, Calvert City, KY.  It is an excellent resource for articles relating to the family.  To learn more consult the congregation's website: http://www.calvertchurchofchrist.com

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Get All The Facts
By Larry Pasley

    The new boss was determined to rid the company of all slackers.
    On a tour of the facilities, the CEO noticed a guy leaning against a wall. The room was full of workers and he wanted to let them know that he meant business. He asked the guy, "How much money do you make a week?"
    A little surprised, the young man looked at him and said, "I make $400.00 a week. Why?"
    The CEO said, "Wait right here." He walked back to his office, came back in two minutes, and handed the guy $1,600.00 in cash and said, "Here's four weeks pay. Now GET OUT and don't come back."
    Feeling pretty good about himself, the CEO looked around the room and asked, "Does anyone want to tell me what that goof-ball did here?"
    From across the room a voice said, "He’s the pizza delivery guy from Domino's."
     The story above illustrates the necessity of getting all the facts before we make a decision. This extremely important in the area of our salvation. Most of the differences in various churches and their answer to how we are saved result from a failure to get the whole picture.
    When studying the bible we must find all the facts that God’s word gives us before we jump to a conclusion about whether we are saved or not.
    For example, some might take the scripture which says that God is not willing for any to perish (2 Pet 3:9) and conclude that everyone will be saved (universal salvation).
    Others take scriptures which talk of our faith saving us (Luk 7:50,  Eph 2:8) and conclude that we are saved by faith alone, without considering scriptures that clearly state that obedience is necessary for our salvation (Heb 5:9, Jas 2:14-26).
    We must find all the facts about salvation before we make any conclusions about whether we are saved or not. You can look up: save, saves, saved, and salvation in a concordance or in a computer bible program such as e-sword, download free at (http://www.e-sword.net/) and find all the scriptures which deal with salvation.
    If we see just a few pixels of a picture it is impossible to know what the picture is, but as more pixels are added we get a clearer picture until we finally get the last pixel and then we have the complete picture.
    Please don’t base your salvation on an incomplete picture of what the bible says about the topic.
    With love and concern...

- Larry Pasley serves as a minister with the Jackson Street church of Christ in Alexandria, LA. He may becontacted through the congregation's website at http://www.JacksonStAlex.com

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Nuggets & Quick Riches - misc. goodies
Scriptural Giving
By Larry Fluitt

    All of us should want to give scripturally, that is, as the Master wants us to give. If we fail to please Him, we have failed utterly. Second Corinthians 8 furnishes a guide to giving. In this chapter we find a number of principles which, if honored, will insure scriptural giving.
1. Scriptural giving shows our JOY!
“that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded in the riches of their liberality” (v.2)
2.Scriptural giving shows our TRUST!
“For I bear witness that according to their ability, yes, and beyond their ability, they were freely willing” (v.3)
3. Scriptural giving shows our COMMITMENT!
“And not only as we had hoped, but they first gave themselves to the Lord, and then to us by the will of God” (v.5)
4. Scriptural giving shows our LOVE!
“I speak not by commandment, but I am testing the sincerity of your love by the diligence of others” (v.8)
5. Scriptural giving shows our GRATTITUDE!
“For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich” (v.9)
6. Scriptural giving shows our WILLINGNESS!
“For if there is first a willing mind, it is accepted according to what one has, and not according to what he does not have” (v.12)

- Larry Fluitt; via the weekly bulletin of the Harrisburg church of Christ in Harrisburg, IL.

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One Little Wire!
By Kevin Williams

     We have been without the internet in the offices for two weeks. With the help of Alan Shelby and much persistence we now have the internet once again. Thanks Alan, you really came through for us!
     When the last technician looked at our box (that feeds the telephone and internet through a line to the building) he looked at it for a few minutes and said, “Hmmm, this orange wire doesn’t even seem to be connected.” And that’s it! One little wire caused so many problems! A hundred people haven’t received our bulletin for three weeks. Our web site was not able to be updated. Several headaches lingered in the church offices. Extra work was required to get normal, daily tasks done for the church. Updates on our sick have been late in coming or missed altogether. And, there were others things too numerous to mention. All caused by ONE THIN, LITTLE, ORANGE WIRE!
     I got to thinking about that one little wire and how it hindered us. I then thought about those who might be hindered in their relationship with Christ by “one little thing.” Note seven of these...
⇒ One little problem we refuse to resolve
⇒ One little habit we refuse to break
⇒ One little relationship we refuse to repair
⇒ One little attitude we refuse to change
⇒ One little opportunity we refuse to take
⇒ One little fear we refuse to face
⇒ One little sin we refuse to forgive
Are you being hindered in your faith, worship, or work for the Lord by one of these “little things?”
    Think about it. Eternity may very well depend on it!

- Kevin Williams preaches for the Walnut Grove church of Christ in Benton, KY.  He may be contacted through the church's website: http://walnutgrovechurchofchrist.org/

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True Christmas Spirit
    The annual Christmas play was the order of the day at a private school, and the coach chose an amiable, beautifully brought-up boy of seven to play the role of the inn-keeper at Bethlehem .  The boy had trouble learning to turn away Mary and Joseph with a curt: “There is no room at the inn!” but had his part down pat by the end of the rehearsal period.
    Then came the big night, with his proud mother and father beaming at him from the first row.  He boomed out, “There is no room at the inn!” with great authority, but then he couldn’t resist adding, “But come in, anyhow, and have some cookies and milk.”

-Selected; via THE SOWER, a weekly publication of the Arthur church of Christ, Arthur, IL. Ron Bartanen, who serves as minister and editor, may be contacted through the congregation's website: http://www.arthurchurchofchrist.com

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Hearts of Gold - poetry
By J. Randal Matheny

Here is the 3rd stanza of "Because of Thy Great Bounty," from _The Eternal Things_, by Grace Noll Crowell. It seemed a fitting thought to counter the commercialism of the season.
  Because love has been lavished so
  Upon me, Lord,
  A wealth I know that was not meant
  For me to hoard,
  I shall give love to those in need,
  Shall show that love by word and deed,
  Thus shall my thanks be thanks indeed.

Merry Christmas to you and yours, whether your tree be
large or small, real or artificial, green or silver (do
they make those anymore?).

- J. Randal Matheny edits and writes UPLift, an inspirational ezine. He
may be contacted here: <http://randalmathenycom/>. When reprinting this
material, please include the following:
Copyright (c) 2010 J. Randal Matheny
All rights reserved. You may forward the
email to friends as is. You may not alter
it in any way or remove any text or

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          How Sweet His Way
          By Robert F. Lowery

After work and toil of busy days,
How sweet at last be home--
To relax and share a family's care,
'Stead going it alone.
How sweet it is to take the time
To meditate and ponder
Upon my lists of given gifts
Bestowed by "Him" up yonder.

In reaching for that longed for goal,
I ask His help, endeavor--
How sweet it is to know this is
His master plan forever.
How sweet indeed this humble view
Of truth, when honesty transpires;
To love and share His ready care,
Obedient to His desires.

When trial and error beset me
Along tribulation's road,
Sweet indeed it is, this plan of His--
When I ask, He'll ease the load.
How sweet it is to do His will
Instead of mine each day.
So much reward comes from my Lord,
Doing my things, His way.

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By Helen Steiner Rice

Life without purpose is barren indeed -
There can't be a harvest unless you plant a seed,
There can't be attainment unless there's a goal,
And man's but a robot unless there's a soul...

If we send no ships out, no ships will come in,
And unless there's a contest, nobody can win...
For games can't be won unless they are played
And prayers can't be answered unless they are prayed...

So whatever is wrong with your life today,
You'll find a solution if you kneel down and pray
Not just for pleasure, enjoyment and health,
Not just for honors and prestige and wealth...

But pray for a purpose to make life worth living,
And pray for the joy on unselfish giving,
For great is your gladness and rich your reward
When you make your life's purpose the choice of the Lord.

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Gold Mines ---- quotes, sayings & sign messages
Some people are like blisters.  They don’t show up until after the work is done.
“Duty is ours.  The results belong to God.”  (John Adams)

You can’t change the past, but you can ruin the present by worrying about the future.

“THIS CIVILIZATION cannot survive without the dynamic of Christianity.”  (Gen. Douglas MacArthur)

“A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious.  But it cannot survive treason from within.  An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and he carries his banners openly.  But the traitor moves among those with the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys heard in the very halls of government itself.”                     -- Cicero , 42 B.C.

“I BELIEVE IN CHRISTIANITY as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.”  (C. S. Lewis)

"Be thankful for what you have before you get what you deserve."

"Patience is the ability to let your light shine before your fuse blows."

“IF YOU WISH another to keep your secret, first keep it yourself.”  - Latin proverb

- via THE SOWER, a weekly publication of the Arthur church of Christ, Arthur, IL. Ron Bartanen, who serves as minister and editor, may be contacted through the congregation's website: http://www.arthurchurchofchrist.com

Some people are born with a grin. Others don’t acquire it until they become grandparents.
God is more interested in making us what we ought to be than in giving us what we think we ought to have.

Character is assessed by noting who approves and supports one, and who doesn’t – and why.

One minute of keeping your mouth shut can be worth more than an hour of explanation.

JOY: when J-esus O-ccupies Y-ou

- via The Encourager, the weekly bulletin for the Dongola church of Christ, Dongola, IL.  Gerald Cowan serves the congregation as minister.  He may be contacted at Geraldcowan1931@aol.com

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