For the past two years I have had the privilege of editing our church bulletin. It is a great responsibility and conveyance of trust by the elders. We live in an age of technology unimaginable even within our lifetimes. We have been able to expand the use of our bulletin by emailing a PDF version of it for whoever would like to receive it. The ease with which it can be distributed electronically has made it feasible to utilize our church bulletins in evangelism once again where postage and material costs made it no longer feasible. Even though this has made the bulletin production much easier today than before, sometimes putting your finger on an article for a bulletin can become a challenge when it is complicated by space restrictions. So, when I came across this collection of exhortations assembled by Sam E. Hester, I purchased it with using in the church bulletin primarily in mind although it contains information that can be used in other mediums as well.
The book contains many various aspects or themes relating to worship including gospel meetings, appropriate attire, attendance, tardiness, congregational singing, study, etc. The book includes a Table of Contents to help locate the particular aspect one is looking to read. There are several pointed reminders of which we need to be reminded. One that has come to my attention is tardiness. We need to remind and be reminded of the impression we leave (whether intentional or not) when we fail to show up for services at the designated time. One wonders if some have failed to realize this is one of the clear principles involved in the Parable of the Virgins in Matthew 25!
As I scan through this collection of exhortations, I found one that I often need to remind myself of:
I Have Never Known
1. A farmer who failed in life because he quit early to attend Wednesday Bible lessons.
2. A businessman who ever lost his business because he closed on Sunday.
3. Anyone who was too tired to go to worship on Sunday & also too tired to go to work on Monday.
4. Anyone ever being made better by staying away from worship because they do not like some one who is there.
5. A farmer who became poverty-stricken because he refused to plow on Sunday but chose to go to worship.
6. A strong spiritual Christian who neglected the assemblies of the church. (pp. 108-109).
This is not the only book that brother Hester has compiled and one would do well to look at his other compilations as well. Brother Sam Hester is Professor of Bible and Director of the Christian Training Series at Freed-Hardeman University. He is also the owner of Hester Publications, which specializes in the short-run production of books that are kept in print because of his dedication. He is also one of the founding members of the “Friends of the Restoration Movement” group, which has been hosting special speakers along this line during the Freed-Hardeman University Bible Lectureship. If you have not visited the web site of Hester Publications at http://www.hesterpublications.com/, I encourage you to do so. You will find many books of interest for your church library. Special pricing is made available for larger purchases. Thanks to brother Hester’s love of the church and her history, I have been blessed to add to my library many works that may otherwise have been unavailable.