2, 2002 Vol 2 #4
summer is here. Students are out of
schools and colleges. My youngest
son, Jeremy, graduates from high school
this year. I'm sure many of you have
children or grandchildren who are
graduating. Congratulations to all of
you, for graduation marks the acquisition
of that much coveted degree and the
knowledge that should accompany it.
More precious than worldly
knowledge is the knowledge and keeping of
the word of God. Psalm 119 is
devoted to this theme, and verse 11 says,
"Thy word have I laid up in my heart, that
I might not sin against thee." If
only we, our children, and our
grandchildren studied God's perfect law of
liberty as much as we study history,
math, and English. The prize, the
crown of life which God gives His faithful
people, is worth much more than any
earthly diploma. Let us all strive
for that crown.
Panning for more Gold
A Blind Leap of Faith?
preacher's articles this issue
Some non-believers speak of a
Christian's faith as a blind leap of
faith. Not So! Faith in God
and His Son gives one the ability to see
"Now faith is the substance of things
hoped for, the evidence of things not
seen." Hebrews 11:1 ( KJV)
This is not a definition of faith;
rather, it is a description of
faith. Faith provides a foundation
for hope and gives substance to things
unseen, treating them as if they were
already objects of sight.
It is said of Moses that he went about "as
seeing Him who is unseen."
Paul wrote, "We look not at the
things which are seen, but at the
things which are not seen; for the
things which are seen are temporal,
but the things which are not seen are
eternal." 2 Corinthians 4:18
HOPE AND TRUST There is nothing
mysterious about treating something
unseen as if it were something already
in sight. When one boards an
airplane to travel to a small island in
the vast Pacific Ocean for the first
time, he does so "by faith." He
has put his trust (faith) in the
information and evidence provided that
such a place. He trusts that the
pilot knows how to fly the airplane to
the island. He trusts the plane is
capable of making the journey. And
he hopes to arrive safely.
Those who go about blindly are not
Christians. Christians walk in the
light. The ones who walk in
darkness are those who are going about
blindly. ". . . the god of
this world has blinded the minds of
the unbelieving, that they might not
see the light of the gospel of the
glory of Christ, who is the image of
God." 2 Corinthians 4:4
Thought," May 22, 2002.
is edited by Ron Adams, who preaches for
North San Diego Church of Christ, San
To subscribe to "Thursday's Thought,"
write Ron at firstname.lastname@example.org
|You Catch 'em
A. C. Quinn
There is an appealing statement
going around which says, "Be fishers of
men. You catch `em, He'll clean `em."
Interesting, but to the point. Jesus
called Peter and Andrew, fishermen, who
were told that, henceforth, they would
be made "fishers of men" (Matt.4:19). It
is noteworthy in this passage that Jesus
called these men, giving them a singular
mission--"You Catch 'em."
Every fisherman knows that catching the
fish is really the easy part of the
task; after that comes the laborious,
messy task of "cleaning 'em. It
was to this end--the cleaning, cleansing
process--that Jesus came into this world
(Matt. 1:21). Every scene of the
cross as recorded in the records of the
gospel portray so vividly how Jesus
willingly suffered the anguish and
cruelty of death on the cross in order
that wicked man might be cleansed (Eph.
5:26). That cleansing process is
an ongoing one for those who "...walk in
the light as he is in the light...the
blood of Jesus
Christ...cleanseth us from all sin"
The task of the fisherman-- "You catch
`em" --is not for the elite nor any
special group. The Lord's commission
(Mk. 16:15-16; Matt. 28:19-20) is to all
his followers as Paul so instructed
Timothy: "And the things that thou hast
heard of me among many witnesses, the
same commit thou to faithful men, who
shall be able to teach others also"
(2Tim. 2:2). Truly, Jesus will do the
"cleaning/cleansing" if his fishermen
will only do the "catching."
C. Quinn preaches for the Celeste Church
of Christ, Celeste, Texas.
goodies this issue
The Very Best Father's Day
I look forward to Father's Day.
There's something special that always
happens around that time. Hanging
in my office are three framed pieces of
ruled notebook paper, each one written
by one of my three daughters many, many
years ago. I'd like to share the
contents of these three treasures with
Leann (the youngest) wrote - A Daddy is
Kisses my mommie
Loves and respects you
Buys new stuff for you
Likes to play with his car
Likes to play the piano
Goes to work
Likes to read
Christie (the middle) wrote - A Daddy is
Loves his wife
Loves his children
Goes to the job in the
Brings on the bacon (money)
Likes to go shopping in a
Buys new cars
Is loved by his children
Is loved by his wife
Teresa (the oldest) wrote - A Daddy is
Cares for you
Provides for you
Takes time for you
Goes places with you
Shows you how to do things
Loves his wife
Makes you write stuff like
this (Ha! Ha!)
I can think of only one Father who might
have been more proud of a gift than I am
of these. The father of the
prodigal received the very best gift of
all when his son came home, healing the
great hurt that lived in his father's
breast (Luke 15:11ff). Give your
father a great gift this year; each of
the above gifts cost absolutely nothing!
Bullington is an elder and minister for
the church of Christ at Chestnut
Mountain, Gainesville, Georgia. To
subscribe to his email article, "Today's
Little Lift," send a blank email to: TLLemail@example.com You
can reach Jim at firstname.lastname@example.org
As some of you know, we got a
new puppy this week. We had put off the
decision to get a new puppy for a couple
of years now as losing our last dog,
Ching, was so hard for us.
Now we are in the "training the puppy"
phase. Do you know what it takes
to train a puppy? The answer is
Patience! This is not our first
experience with this, so we kind of know
what to expect, but I was rereading one
of the "how to train your puppy" books
and it reminded me of some things
concerning the way puppies think and
perceive things. What was
surprising is that many of those things
are just like us as humans.
For example, the book said that puppies
have extremely short memories. When they
potty in the house, they immediately
forget about it. If you try to
remind them by yelling at them or maybe
rubbing their little noses in their
mistake, they don't have a clue as to
why you are upset with them. It
also said that except for the occasional
rouge, they want to please you more than
anything, but have a real
hard time, since you and they don't
speak the same language.
How much is that like our relationship
to God? No matter how much we want
to do all the right things, we end up
making a mistake in the wrong
place. Our memories are so short
that we mess up and then forget what we
have just done wrong and do it again.
James writes about this in James 1:23-34
"For if any be a hearer of the word,
and not a doer, he is like unto a man
beholding his natural face in a glass:
For he beholdeth himself, and goeth
his way, and straightway forgetteth
what manner of man he was." John
says in 1 John 1:8 "If we say that
we have no sin, we deceive ourselves,
and the truth is not in us."
We want to be good, but we just can't do
it. That's why God uses the same thing
you use in training puppies.
Lawson preaches for the Church of Christ
in Greenville, Ohio.
A. Jay Kelly
Listen, my son, to your
father's instruction and do not
forsake your mother's teaching. They
will be a garland to grace your head
and a chain to adorn your neck.
In this wise advice, we find the
principle of an eldership hierarchy, or
leadership by older people, taught
throughout scripture. In this
case, it is the children who are
specifically taught to emulate the
teachings of their parents. In
other Scriptures, we are taught to
respect the older members of the
congregation. There is also,
however, an implied responsibility in
this passage given to the parents.
Our news services are full of stories of
children out of control, some even
committing horrible crimes. In
many cases, these kids are emulating the
teaching of their parents. We don't have
to be "bad people" to teach bad lessons
to our kids.
When we blame
others for our failures, we teach our
disparage those in authority, we teach
our children lack of respect for
When we miss
worship for recreational activities, we
teach our children the place of God in
It is easy to point to our slums, where
children grow up surrounded by drugs,
criminal activity and other forms of
immorality, as the problem. But I
remain convinced that the problem is the
same when our more affluent children
commit crimes. They were taught by their
What are we teaching our babies?
Jay Kelley is the evangelist for the
church of Christ in Colby,
Kansas. His e-mail is email@example.com
Hearts of Gold
The Path I Make
I took a walk
down the road one day,
And then looked at the path I'd made.
Behind me walked a little boy
Following in the steps I'd laid.
He tried to step in every track
He saw as he walked along.
As I watched him there I had to think
Of what could happen if I was wrong.
That little boy looks up to me,
To show him which way to go.
He follows me as the only one
He trusts cause I ought to know.
As a father my task is simply this,
To lead him in the light.
God gave to me this little boy
And I must teach him right.
There's lots of things we'd like to
In our lives from day to day.
But knowing there's a boy who's
Helps keep me in the way.
Hoover preaches for the Comanche Church
of Christ in Comanche,
Oklahoma 73529. He has written
over 200 poems on most Bible
characters or events. If you need
a poem for your bulletin or to
illustrate a sermon, you can email Scott
and he will send you one.
Rose Ann Noey
What do you
want to do?
I don't know, what do you want to do?
Let's play church. That sounds
We'll need a Bible. Hey, I've got
I'll stand here and lead the songs,
You sit there and sing along.
Then I'll sit, you pass the plate:
Grape juice, crackers, then money - but
Someone needs to lead a prayer.
My turn now, it's only fair.
You can preach, but not too long.
I'll lead the invitation song.
Children play, but what of us,
When all we do is gripe or fuss?
Do you think that God is pleased
With worship from a heart diseased?
Let's hear the Word then turn about
To earnestly seek that Heavenly Route.
With contrite heart and conscience clear
We'll truly worship our Lord so dear.
Ann Noey worships with the Yorktown
Church of Christ in Logansport, Indiana.
|Just A Minute
I have only
just a minute.
Only sixty seconds in it.
Forced upon me, can't refuse it.
Didn't see it, didn't choose it.
But it's up to me to use it.
I must suffer if I lose it.
Just a tiny little minute,
But eternity is in it!
& sayings for bulletins and signs
Be careful of
your thoughts. They may break into
words at any time!
The man of the hour is generally one who
has made every minute count.
Make the most of life on earth, but know
the best is yet to come!
Your problems can never exhaust God's
Master your habits, or your habits will