“That fellow cannot see the forest for the trees!” Have you ever heard those or similar sentiments? The meaning? Well, for some reason people at times can get so focused on the things they see, that they fail to realize how the things they see are intended to fit into a bigger picture. It is as if they get lost in the particulars of a certain thing, and miss its place within the greater purpose.
American society sure can be fickle! Media’s love for sensationalism seems to cross every line. One minute they are spouting forth freedom to do anything you want to do, be whoever you want to be, and say whatever you want to say. But, when someone says something that is not politically correct, they are all over it like you know what. To them, the USA espouses nearly 320 million versions of truth, as many different versions as there are people. However, if a network’s “trusty” investigation team discovers inconsistencies that are news worthy, watch out!!
Here is a trivia question. Who was the first person in the Bible to ask for forgiveness? If Adam and Eve come to mind, think again. It is true that they committed the first sin, but if you go back and read Genesis 3, when they ate of the forbidden fruit, God confronted them about it, and they admitted their actions. However, there is nothing in the record that the first couple said they were sorry for what they had done, or even asked God to forgive them.
How long have you been “counting the days?” No, not the days to the election so much as the days when the “blood letting” will be finally over! Have you heard yourself say, “If I get one more of those phone calls, or see one more of those campaign advertisements, I will ______________. (The blank may need to be lengthened, but keep is sweet!)
I hope you will get out and perform your right as a citizen of the greatest nation on the earth at every given opportunity; there seems to be more of them lately. While I have my personal opinion about whom I think should be elected, the bigger thing to consider at this juncture is the exercise of the right. It is one of the things people should take seriously if they want to continue living under the banner of freedom.
I have been doing a good bit of night driving of late. While my prescription glasses give me 20-20 vision, there are some things about driving at night that are very different from day travel. The biggest difference is distance and clarity. At night you can see lights in the distance, but as the radiance of the light fades, so goes the clarity of its surroundings. That is so different from the day when all around you, and as far as the eye can see, the clarity is extremely improved.
One night last week, I began thinking about eternity, and how when I think about eternity it is a lot like driving at nighttime. There are things we know about eternity because we have heard about it much of our lives, and at different intervals we read about it in the word of God. But when you are thinking about what eternity is going to be like, it is so hard to imagine how long it truly is, along with other particulars. For instance, how will I feel in eternity? 1 Corinthians 15:51-52 says we will be given a new body, spiritual in nature. Will that spiritual body feel? If so, how? This is similar to driving at night and not being able to make out all the details in the short distance from you. The truth is eternity is closer than you think. It is as close as the darkness at night, and maybe closer.
Well, our Forty and Forward day came and went with last week’s celebration! What a great and auspicious occasion it was, celebrating the success of so many years of work for the Lord in Buford, Georgia. 715 attended the Sunday morning worship assembly. A greater portion of that group stayed and enjoyed a delicious barbeque meal afterward. It was truly another “red-letter” day at Buford church of Christ.
A visiting preacher recently asked me how long I had been preaching for the Buford church of Christ. Telling him that Jenny and I were in our ninth year here, he quickly responded, “Do you realize you have been here nearly a quarter of the years this church has been in existence?” Of course, I had not considered that, but he was right. Forty years! For forty years the Lord’s “city set on a hill” in Buford, Georgia has not been hidden. During these years she has been a beacon of the hope of the gospel to the people of this community, our state, and to many of the nations of the world.
I am so glad God inspired men to write the Bible. In it are so many things that are true. In fact, it can be said that all truths of the world find their foundation in the Scriptures. The Scriptures came about through plenary verbal inspiration. That means that absolutely every word of the original documents came about by the mouth of God, 2 Timothy 3:16-17. Just think of how important it is that every truth of the Bible is true. What if someone discovered just one thing that the Bible claimed as being true was, in fact, untrue? For me, if I were to discover that somehow someone had proven that something the Bible claimed was true was actually untrue, I think I would probably give up the Bible as being true all together.
Our gospel meeting time is here! We are excited about our meeting this year. We have a speaker that we believe will be a great blessing to the congregation and to our friends in the community. Keith Parker comes to us from the Nashville, Tennessee area, Hendersonville, to be exact. He preached for the church of Christ there for sixteen years, and for the last several years has been involved in full-time meeting work. He preaches on lectureship programs all around the country, and is a great voice for the cause of Christ.
It is good for us to devote our time to thinking about the value of having such a meeting as this, and for the opportunities it presents to us as Christians.
From week to week it is my privilege to write some words for the Family Focus magazine. Pam Newman does such an amazing job in producing this wonderful gift each week; I hope you see it as just that, a gift. It is our story, our scrapbook of sorts, that is preserving, week in and week out, our wonderful congregational history.
With every coming issue I start my “Chords From The Harp” section with a clean document with no words on a page. Sometimes I have in mind where I am going to go with a subject. Most of the time, I begin with a verse in mind, a teaching of Scripture, or just a thought, and I let the subject take me where it wants to go. If you read my articles regularly, you may have even asked, “Where is he going with this?” Hopefully, not too often!