BulletinGold #136
April 2012   Vol 12 #2

BulletinGold #136
April 2012
Vol. 12 Num. 2
David Bragg
Edward Thomason
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In This Issue:
- “It Must Be In There Somewhere…” by A. C. Quinn
God and the IRS, by William Parris
When I Survey the Wondrous Cross, Patrick Hogan
A Truly Healthy Diet Plan, by Gerald Cowan
- Victory at the Cross, by Charlie Gamble
- Brotherly Advice
- Marriage, by David Sain
- The Quilt
- Have No Fear, by Jo Ann Carlson
- Plant for Eternity
- April Lace, by Floy McHood Lindsay

quotes & sayings for bulletins and signs

New Postings At
Editorial by David Bragg
    Welcome to the April 2012 issue of BulletinGold. Thank you for your support of BulletinGold and may God richly bless your ministry.

David Bragg

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Panning for Gold Feature Articles:
“It Must Be In There Somewhere…”
By A. C. Quinn

    A busy waitress at an over-crowded fish restaurant on a Friday evening was trying to explain to patrons why there was such an overflowing crowd on this particular Friday night. She explained that it was Lenten Season, so a lot of Catholic people come to eat fish on Friday in observance thereof. She went on to explain that her denomination observed Lent, as well. She was asked by one of her patrons where this observance was spoken of in the Bible. Her response was the epitome of sincere religious blindness. She said: “I don’t know where it is, but it must be in there somewhere, or they wouldn't be doing it.” The flabbergasted patron to whom she was responding wanted so much to take this sweet lady aside, and as Aquila and Priscilla did Apollos (Acts 18:26), expound to her “…the way of God more perfectly.” However, neither time nor circumstances permitted such an opportunity; nevertheless, a door may be opened.
    The exchange above is a good example of so many who are following blind religious leaders as the folks were following the scribes and Pharisees in Jesus’ days when He spoke to the same issue:
Matthew 15:13-14 "But he answered and said, Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up. Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch."
The results for those who do not heed the warning today will be the same as it was when Jesus spoke.
    One of the most fatal mistakes religious folks make today is that they put their trust in what men say rather than what the Bible teaches on religious matters. It, therefore, behooves every individual who is searching for the hope and salvation which God offers to the human race to “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me” (John 5:39). Those in Berea are the perfect example of what people ought to do--”…they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so” (Acts 17:11).
    There is one source, and one source alone, by which every controversy must be tried, and that is by the Word that comes from the Lord (Deuteronomy 21:5). It matters not whether one desires to know if observance of fasting during a period referred to as Lent is scriptural, or if it is scriptural to sprinkle for baptism, or if instrumental music in the public worship scriptural. These and all other religious controversies can be put to rest by simply searching the scriptures and applying what the honest searcher finds there.

- A. C. Quinn preaches for the West Main church of Christ in Wolfe City, TX. He may be contacted at acuen30@netzero.net

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God and the IRS
By William Parris

     Income tax time will soon be upon us.  Some of you probably have received your 1040 booklets and have begun to read them.  The booklet contains many instructions with which we have to comply. We may read them and say that we agree with some but would prefer our own way on others.  We can’t decide to create a new tax deduction or tax credit or use our own tax rates just because the instructions do not specifically state that we cannot do so.  We are required to follow them exactly as printed and we are required to file our 1040 forms by the required date.  The IRS will accept nothing less from us.  We can’t tell them that we decided to do the return our own way or we just never got around to filing the return.
     God has provided us with instructions for our life in the Bible.  We are to follow the instructions exactly.  He has a plan for our salvation, for living our life, and for worshiping him.  The IRS won’t allow us to “do it our way”.  Why should we expect God to require less of us than the IRS?

- William Parris is a new member of the College Church of Christ in Victoria, Texas.  Ken Walters preaches for the congregation and may be contacted at http:www.collegechurchvictoria.org

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When I Survey the Wondrous Cross
By Patrick Hogan

     Isaac Watts, who lived from 1674 to 1749 continues to influence Christians worship over 250 years after his death. During his lifetime he wrote approximately 600 hymns, many of which are still used in worship today.
     In 1707, he wrote "When I Survey the Wondrous Cross." The words to the second verse are: "Forbid it Lord that I should boast, save in the death of Christ my Lord. All the vain things that charm me most, I sacrifice them to His blood." This thought is surely based on the apostle Paul's affirmation in Galatians 6:14, "But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world."
     When we reflect on (survey) the cross, we should truly be amazed and humbled. When we survey the cross we see the reality of sin, for if it were not for mankind's sin, the death of Jesus would not have been necessary. We also see the high cost of redemption. To redeem us required the death of the Son of God! The cost of redemption reminds us of how serious sin truly is.
     When we survey the cross we are reminded that the price for our redemption has been paid. Because of the cross we have been spared from condemnation.
     When we survey the cross we are told in no uncertain terms that God loves us. As unbelievable as it may seem, He really loves us.
     May we, like Paul, determine to glory only in the cross of Jesus.

- Patrick Hogan serves as a minister and elder of the Shady Acres church of Christ, in Sikeston, MO.  He may be contacted through the church's website at http://www.shadyacreschurch.com

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A Truly Healthy Diet Plan
By Gerald Cowan

This is about the time of the year when it becomes apparent that the diet plan you included in your New Year’s Resolutions is working – or is not working, again. You went through this last year too, didn’t you?
     For a healthy diet there are things you must avoid. They are not good for you.
  • Do not eat humble pie. This is usually nothing but self-pity, a put-on that adds to your other problems.
  • Do not eat crow. This is deserved shame and embarrassment.
  • Do not eat your heart out. Envy will always leave you unsatisfied and wanting more.
  • Do not swallow your pride. It will damage your digestion.
     For a healthy diet there are some things you must always include.
  • Be sure you hunger and thirst for righteousness (Mt. 5:7). You will never take in anything that will harm you, or others.
  • Go on a strict bread and water diet. The bread of life (Jesus and every word that comes from the mouth of God; John 6:35, Mt. 4:4). The water of life (the Spirit that Christ gives to those who believe and obey him; John 7:37-39, Rev. 22:17).
- Gerald Cowan preaches for the Dongola church of Christ in Dongola, IL.  He may be contacted at Geraldcowan1931@aol.com

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Nuggets & Quick Riches - misc. goodies
Victory at the Cross
By Charlie Gamble

I have heard lessons about victory in the cross before, but the other day I noticed something that had always been right before my eyes. There are four “V” letters at the angles of the cross. That is an obvious sermon outline. Victory over sin, victory over death, victory over hopelessness, victory over Satan could be among the topics. Just pick any four and start preaching. Just when it looked like Satan had won, Jesus gave us the victory. Likewise, when it seems that life is getting us down, we should remember that we are already victorious. Just look at the cross.

- Charlie Gamble preaches for the
Brunswick church of Christ in Southport, NC. . He may be contacted at cgamble64@gmail.com

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Brotherly Advice
    Charlie was playing with his little brother, Mickey, when the little boy asked whether he could fly like Superman.
    “Sure you can, Mickey,” Charlie said.  “Just flap your arms really hard.”
    Mickey climbed up on the windowsill, started flapping like mad, jumped, then smashed into the floor,  just a few inches below.
    Horrified by Mickey’s screaming, their mother ran into the room and said, “What happened?”
    Charlie said, “I was just teaching Mickey not to believe everything he’s told.”

- Cybersalt Digest; 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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By David Sain

    Marriage is the product of love that begins as blind excitement and matures into commitment and responsibility.
    Marriage is stronger than death, yet so fragile that we celebrate the achievement of staying together.
    Marriage is a lot of routines, yet it needs daily attention ... and never to be taken for granted.
    Marriage is growing up and growing old together, but it is also growing in trust and contentment.
    Marriage is disappointments and hurts along the way. It is also happiness and laughter along the way. But the bad times are made a little easier, and the good times are made even better, by sharing them together.

- David Sain, via The Central Message, the weekly bulletin of the Central church of Christ in Paducah KY.  Jim Faughn serves as an elder and preacher for the congregation.  He may be contacted through the congregation's website at: http://www.centralchurchofchrist.org

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The Quilt

    As I faced my Maker at last judgment, I knelt before the Lord along with the other souls. Before each of us laid our lives, like the squares of a quilt. An angel sat before each of us sewing our quilt squares together into a tapestry that is our life.
    But as my angel took each piece of cloth off the pile, I noticed how ragged and empty each of my squares was. They were filled with giant holes. Each square was labeled with a part of my life that had been difficult, the challenges and temptations I was faced with in everyday life. I saw hardships that I endured, which were the largest holes of all.
    I glanced around me. Nobody else had such squares. Other than a tiny hole here and there, the other tapestries were filled with rich color and all the bright hues of worldly fortune. I gazed upon my own life and was disheartened. My angel was sewing the ragged pieces of cloth together, threadbare and empty like binding air.
    Finally the time came when each life was to be displayed, held up to the light, the scrutiny of the truth ...The others rose, each in turn, holding up their tapestries. So filled their lives had been.
    My angel looked upon me, and nodded for me to rise. My gaze dropped to the ground in shame. I hadn't had all the earthly fortunes. I had love in my life, and laughter. But there had also been trials of illness and death, and false accusations that took from me my world as I knew it.
    I had to start over many times. I often struggled with the temptation to quit, only to somehow muster the strength to pick up and begin again. I had spent many lonely nights on my knees in prayer, asking for help and guidance in my life. I had often been held up to ridicule, which I endured painfully: each time offering it up to the Father in hopes that I would not melt within my skin beneath the judgmental gaze of those who unfairly judged me.
    And now, I had to face the truth. My life was what it was, and I had to accept it for what it had been...I rose and slowly lifted the combined squares of my life to the light. An awe-filled gasp filled the air. I gazed around at the others who stared at me with eyes opened wide.
    Then I looked upon the tapestry before me. Light flooded the many holes, creating an image, The Face of Christ. Then our Lord stood before me, with love and warmth in his eyes. He said: "Every time you gave over your life to me, it became my life, my hardships, and my struggles. Each point of light in your life is when you stepped aside and let me shine thru, until there was more of me than there was of you."

- Author Unknown; submitted by  Amy Hardeman, a member of the
Oliver church of Christ in Rogersville, AL.

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Hearts of Gold - poetry
Have No Fear
By Jo Ann Carlson

God only seems afar off
When troubles 'round you press.
You're only blinded by your fears
But He's still there to bless.

You only think God is not near;
And prayers you pray unheard.
You'll find His ever-present love,
When you read His Holy Word.

He's a help in time of trouble,
And a friend for just a prayer.
God is waiting patiently;
And He's always, always, there!

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Plant for Eternity
If you would plant for a year, plant grain:
Yours shall be grain, simple and plain.
If you would plant for a decade, plant trees:
Yours shall be olives and shade and ease.
To plant for eternity, plant men:
Eternal harvests shall be yours then.

- Selected

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April Lace
Floy McHood Lindsay

Misty shades of green
Spread fragile fingers of lace
Across the trees, and touch the sky.
Floral sprays of beauty,
In rainbow colors,
Appearing here and there,
And birds flit by;
Reminding us again that God remembers
His promise of new life.
You will find His face
If you look deep into the magic
Of the morning,
As your eyes behold the mystery
Of April lace.

- Floy McHood Lindsay; 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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Gold Mines ---- quotes, sayings & sign messages
"Do you really believe that Jesus has taken all your sin, or do you reserve a part for old times sake?"

"Those are the best Christians who are more careful to reform themselves than to censure others."

Horace Greeley: "Fame is a vapor, popularity an accident, riches take wings. Only one thing endures, and that is character."

"Do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of."

"People who have no charity for the faults of others are generally blind to their own!"

John Bunyan: "Indeed, this is one of the great mysteries in the world - namely that a righteousness that resides with a Person in heaven should justify me, a sinner, on earth."

"One of the most difficult things to give away is kindness, for it is usually returned."

The best thing to save for old age is YOURSELF.

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BulletinGold Extra ---- recent postings on our Blogsite
- 50/50, H. Norman Wright
- Do angels drive white Jaguar’s? By Rick Woodall
- A King Who Sold Out, Patrick Hogan
- Deck of Cards, Kevin Rayner
- Be A Builder. by Joe Chesser
- What We Have in Christ and Could Not Have Without Him
- Different But United, by Bill Brandstatter
- "The Legacy We Leave Behind," by Bob Spurlin
- Will History Repeat?

- Authority, by Earl B. Claud
- No Charge, by Shirley Ceasar
- Design Demands a Designer, by Mike Johnson
- Gloom and Despair, by  C. M. Callan
- Tell The World, by Roger D. Campbell
- Two Perspectives on Giving, by Kevin Williams
- Falling Through the Cracks, by Jim Faughn
- The Foolishness of God, by David R. Ferguson
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