BulletinGold #46
September 5, 2004   Vol 4 #5
 

Editor's Remarks
----by Donna Richmond

I am thankful to everyone who sends me articles and poems for BulletinGold.  I feel blessed that I have "met" each one of you through this little newsletter.  Today I am especially grateful to Rick Woodall for his message "Face to Face" and to Rose Ann Noey for her poem. 

You see, like everyone living, your editor makes mistakes.  I sin.  Last week, even though I had very good intentions, I did something so incredibly foolish and so hurtful that it cost me the friendship of someone I cherish.  There are no words in the English language that I can say to tell her how sorry I am.  There is nothing I can do to make amends.  She has cut me out of her life.  She will not talk to me.

I am reminded of the words of the hymn "Does Jesus Care?"  "When for my deep grief, there is no relief, though my tears flow all the night long."  I have lost many nights of sleep over this.  I have asked God's forgiveness and hers.  I feel there is nothing else I can do. Please pray for me and with me.  Please pray that God will soften her heart so she can forgive me and that some good will come out of my
terrible mistake. 

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Panning for more Gold
---- preacher's articles this issue

Face to Face
by: Rick Woodall


I suppose we are all accountable of making careless decisions from time to time in our lives. We do some particular thing not thinking of the consequences. The Bible is jam packed with examples of people who were looking for God to direct them. They loved and respected God with all their hearts.  Human tendency will at times overcome us. We will follow our personal mind-set instead of looking at the big
picture.  When that picture is framed and before us we come to the realization that we have made some terrible mistakes. Usually by the time we attain such knowledge, we think it is too late. We stare at the human side of these gridlocks in life and become very depressed.  There seems to be no place to turn.

You might be experiencing a difficulty in your personal life.  I advise a good visit with King David.  David loved God so much.  I want to share with you some wonderful words from someone who has been there.

"Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always." - Psalm 105:4

There are many faces in the crowd. When you make unintelligent choices, the faces turn from you.  It appears that you are left all alone.  Take your eyes off that big ugly picture and look at the face that is making the difference in your life.  Do everything possible to correct the situation.  Pray for forgiveness and do it now.

Seek His presence and have a face to face heart to heart talk with Him.  There is nothing better than knowing God face to face.  I recollect these words about Moses.  "Since then, no prophet has risen in Israel like Moses, whom the LORD knew face to face, who did all those miraculous signs and wonders the LORD sent him to do in Egypt-- to Pharaoh and to all his officials and to his whole land. For no one
has ever shown the mighty power or performed the awesome deeds that Moses did in the sight of all Israel."  Deut 34:10-12

Was Moses perfect?  Did he always make wise decisions?  My gift reminds me that being in a face to face relationship with the one who loves you will achieve incredible results.

The light at the end of the tunnel is the face of God.

Life Thoughts is a weekly devotional message brought your way by Rick Woodall. Rick serves as the Associate Minister for the Metro Church of Christ in Beautiful Sterling Heights, Michigan. You can listen to a web broadcast of this script at:
http://www.qix.net/~metrococ/page6.html <http://www.qix.net/% 7Emetrococ/page6.html> 

Check out our entire link filled web page at: http://www.qix.net/~metrococ/  http://www.qix.net/%7Emetrococ/

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Faithful to the End
by: Dennis Russell

He was a successful Militia Colonel.  His tactics helped to thwart the enemy's drive to New York City, which would have divided the colonies.  His leadership in the Battle of Ridgefield, Connecticut, in April of 1777 won him a belated promotion to the rank of major general.

In 1799 he married and squandered all his money on social living.  He then began a 16-month treasonable correspondence with the British.  As the commandant at West Point, he agreed to surrender the fort to the enemy in exchange for a royal commission in the British army and a sum of money.

In the beautiful Cadet Chapel at West Point Academy, one discovers the shields of noted American soldiers.  Along with these is a shield without a name.  It bears only two dates-the date of birth and the date of death.

This is the shield of Benedict Arnold.  He was an acknowledged leader who inspired his men in battle during many conflicts.  He failed because his country's ideals had not been sufficiently imbedded within him to stand the rugged test of life.  He became a traitor.  Thus, no name, just a shield bearing two dates.  Why?  Because the final test of faith in one's country is loyalty to its highest commitments.

The Psalmist writes, "Examine me, O Lord, and prove me; try my reins and my heart" (Psalm 26:2).  John would write to the seven churches of Asia, "Be ye faithful to the end."

Dennis Russell preaches for the Foster Road Church of  Christ in Santa Maria,
California.

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Too Late
by: John Shaver

It was a day not unlike most.  It was a time when the church would be coming together.  At least that's what I thought.  You see the door was locked, and the building had been sold.

I don't remember when it started to happen.  I do remember that there was so much enthusiasm when we first started meeting.  We had a goodly number of those who attended.  We had fellowship with each other outside of our weekly meetings.  Everyone could hardly wait until the next meeting time.  Why we even had campaigns to invite others.  We would go door to door with invitations.  We had gospel meetings.  What a joy when someone in the community would visit and an even greater joy when someone was baptized! 
Then a few of us started missing services occasionally.  No, I don't mean just going out of town and worshiping there, but just too tired or company had come to visit or some other activity that kept me away from attending service.  The first few times I was feeling bad, but then I found out it just got easier and easier each time to miss.

Today, I came just to see what was going on.  But it was too late.  You see, others started following my example and stopped attending, too.  No, the preaching was sound (except those sermons that stepped on my toes concerning attendance), and what was taught was right from the Bible.  We just all stopped coming because our priorities had changed.  I never dreamed this day would come in my lifetime.

Then I stopped and looked at my life.  It certainly had not been what it should be.  I was the one who went from being excited about coming to services to being one who rarely came.

Then I awoke!  Had this been nothing but a dream?  No, I had wakened to eternity and stood with nothing to say when I was told to go away.  Too Late!

What will we say on judgment day?  What will be said to us?


John Shafer preaches for the Church of Christ in Kearney, Nebraska. 
www.churchofchrist.us

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The Cross - More Than a Magic Symbol
by: Russ Lawson

The cross has been the center of focus for the past month or so for many people. For some folks it is because of the movie "the passion", some because of the preparation for special Easter celebrations. For far too many though, the cross is like a good luck charm that you keep for emergencies, some people the cross is something you wear on a chain or tee shirt or carry in your pocket. For those people the cross is like the coat hanger in the story below:

"One rainy evening, my husband, John, and I emerged from a restaurant only to find that he had locked the keys in the car.  He insisted he could open the door with a wire coat hanger, so we went back to the restaurant to get one.  There were none to be found. 

John then ran to a department store a quarter-mile away and returned with a hanger.  After a few attempts, he got the door open and we climbed in.  As we sat there, soaked and cold, he stuck the hanger under his seat.  

With a smug grin, he said, 'Now if this ever happens again, I'll have one.'"

It is easy for us to understand the foolishness of the conclusion of the husband in the story, yet do we do the same type of thing ourselves with the cross?

I've spoken with so many people through the years in the midst of some tragedy that sit and hold a cross in their hands like some magic talisman. We keep it tucked away on a chain around our neck or in our pocket, maybe hanging on a wall, until we need it and are disappointed when we can't get to it or get it to work the way we thought it would in our time of emergency. For some it is as if they hope it will ward off the illness, possibility of death or impending bad news. But that is not the purpose of the cross.

For others the cross is used to remind them of the hope they have no matter what bad thing may happen to them here on earth and that is how it should be used. On the cross the debt of all of mankind's sins was paid. The cross is where the power of the resurrection exploded into the world of men. Without the cross there could have been no resurrection, the work of salvation was done there.

The apostle Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 1:18, "For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God." And in Romans 1:16 he said, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believes; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek."

It's interesting to me that in both of these verses the word, which is translated from the original Green language, as "power" is the word "Dunamis", from which we get the word "Dynamo, and Dynamite". The power of God comes to mankind through the cross, but not as a mystical object, but as a sacrifice of the life of the Son of God
that we might obtain everlasting life.

So, hold on to the cross! Not as a mystical symbol to ward off evil, but as a symbol of that which allows us to win over evil no matter what happens in life. That which is the key to our living forever with our God!

God Bless, Russ Lawson

Russ Lawson preaches for the Church of Christ in Greenville, Ohio. Ash Street Bed and Breakfast: www.ashstreetbandb.com  Messages from the Heart is sent several time each week written by Russ Lawson.
To subscribe send a blank email to: join-messages-from-the- heart@xc.org
To Unsubscribe send a blank email to: leave-messages-from-the- heart@xc.org
Send any comments or questions to: rlawson@bright.net Messages From The Heart
WebPage :http://www.bright.net/~rlawson/MFTH.html

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Hearts of Gold
----poetry this issue

Struggles With Sin
by: Rose Ann Noey
How do I ask forgiveness when I
Feel that all is lost?
How do I turn around and throw
Myself down at the Cross?

My sinning way keeps coming back
And rears its ugly head.
How do I say "I'm sorry" when my
Sin is far from dead?

I want to love You more, dear Lord,
Enough to just repent.
How do I say "Enough's enough!"
And change my evil bent?

I'll trust You, Lord, to take away
Those spots from off my soul.
And day by day, I'll pray and pray
You'll lift me from this hole.


Each day is new and with it comes
The chance to start again.
With battles fierce and struggles hard
I know You'll lend a hand.

Please help me walk upon That Road
That's straight with traveler's few,
And to arrive at Jesus' Side,
Sin's mem'ry gone from view.

Rose Ann Noey worships at the church of Christ at Lincolnway in
Columbia City, Indiana. 

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Think On These Things
Submitted and adapted by: Rose Ann Noey

Think On These Things
 
0 - Zero bones broken on that day.
1 - One Savior, who took our sins away.
2 - Two thieves hung on either side.
3 - Three crosses upon the hillside.
4 - Four ways His clothing they divide.
5 - Five wounds:  2 hands, 2 feet, 1 side.
6 - Six cruel hours our Lord endured.
7 - Seven sayings from His Lips so pure.

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A General Prayer
by: H. L. Gradowith


Great Heavenly Father, Almighty on high,
From Whom nought is hidden:  who, what, when, where, why;
Before Thee we come now with heads bowed in prayer,
And offer Thee all our pain, trouble and care.
O, Father, be with us each step of the way,
As in all things we do our best to obey;
And when we grow weary, from bearing our cross
Help us to recall Him Who suffered such loss...
Keep ever before us the 'mark for the prize...'
And on it please help us fix firmly our eyes.
Be with all our loved ones, keep them safe today;
And watch o'er the seekers and show them the way...
Take care of the preachers in far distant lands,
And help us to be there to hold up their hands.
Lord, be with the sick and those who give them care,
And help the afflicted with the load they bear.
Watch over the leaders of all lands today,
Lord, help them to lead us in a peaceful way;
And give strength to those who would walk in the light:
Grant victory to those who fight the good fight.
For all things we give thee the glory and praise,
Now, Father, be with us the rest of our days.
In all things we pray that Thy Will might be done...
We offer our prayer in the Name of Thy Son.

Amen.

May God Bless You as You Study and Obey His Word.  Tim Smith Enon Church of Christ http://www.geocities.com/fp5699/ See The Humor Archive at Yahoo! Groups:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/gradowithsdailyhumor/ See The Poem Archive at Yahoo! Groups: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/gradowithspoems/ Gradowith's Homepage: http://www.geocities.com/gradowith/GradowithsHomepage.html

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Gold Mines
----quotes & sayings for bulletins and signs this issue

A desire to have the Scriptures on our side is one thing, and a
desire to be on the side of the Scriptures is another.

Every command of God has a promise of God for its kernel.

Every fact in the Bible is meant to be a factor in your life.

The more we study, the more we discover our ignorance.

The only way to receive the mind of Christ is to lose your own.

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