Announcements for July 23, 2015
Summary of June PCD Activity
From Cecil Maranville: The Personal Correspondence Department sent out 254 messages in June, including two surface letters.
Examples of some of the inquiries are as follows:
One was to an inmate, who works in the prison’s communication center. In addition to writing for the prison newspaper, he has influence over what videos are played on the in-house TV system. We send him eight COGWA sermons a month, which are aired on the prison TV.
Meanwhile, a Church of God (Seventh Day) group in West Africa (Nigeria) contacted us, wanting to “partner” with COGWA. And a second Nigerian group has been pressing urgently for information about our Nigerian congregation.
A minister from India asked for information about “the Gospel News,” which, taken in the context of his message, meant he wanted to know more about COGWA. He is already well enough informed that he asked permission to visit a COGWA congregation, when he will be in the U.S. in the month of July. A reader who added the title “Bishop” to his name asked for permission to use our Kingdom of God material in a Bible study he is planning.
A contact wrote us that, having been shown our church hymnal by a COGWA member, he was convinced that we are “the right church” and has continued corresponding with us! We invited him to visit church anytime he wanted to do so, telling him that there is only so much he could learn by reading. The experience of hearing messages live and fellowshipping with members would give him a unique perspective.
A woman wrote that after reading our material on the 10 Commandments, she was convicted to straighten out her life. She is committed to following the way of God’s law. Another wrote of a dilemma, saying that she is delighted with what she is learning through LHT. She added that she is repeatedly confronted with a conflict between what she is seeing from the Bible and what she is hearing from the pastor where she attends church!
In the correspondence for June, we helped a woman who is anxious and grieving over the death of her mother. We encouraged and counseled another woman who was recently widowed, but who now is helping an adult child with a custody battle over her grandchildren.
A young woman who apparently has been hit with a number of very heavy trials wrote that she concluded God loves us so much that He keeps trying us, to make sure we won’t break under pressure. We assured her that He doesn’t work quite that way, but that she can be confident of His love—with the caveat that she needs to make certain she is living the way God expects her to live. That opened the door for us to guide her to LHT material.
Two people who seem genuinely sincere about repentance are fearful that God cannot or will not forgive them. Their fear is that they are “not repentant enough.” Even after receiving assurance of God’s willingness to forgive and reading our article on the unpardonable sin, one wrote again to confess that she sinned “knowing better” and feared that meant her sins were unforgivable. So, we followed up with more encouragement that God would forgive her upon true repentance. We hope that God will reach them through His Word in our material that shows them the way.
No one should doubt the evil of pornography. Four separate readers (male and female) pleaded for help in overcoming an addiction to it in various forms and circumstances.
Several contacts wanted encouragement at the same time that they confessed to not living the way they know God instructs. One said he is still living a carnal life even though he “accepted Jesus”; the contact wanted to know if he would still go to heaven (a few issues needed sorting out with this one!). In a different area of life, another wrote of how he wanted God’s blessings. He assured us that he goes to church on the Sabbath—or before if he has to work that day—and that he gives generously to charity. He did not make it clear which day he thought the Sabbath was.
On the lighter side, a reader asked if Noah’s preserving all life through the Flood meant that he brought bacteria onto the ark. One reader wanted to argue that Christ’s death meant that Jonah had to be dead when he was in the great fish. Another person asked who were the parents of Cain’s wife—a twist on the common question. And, lastly, someone assured us that our explanation of where Cain got his wife is all wrong, but that he has the hidden truth. We read his explanation, but we have to confess, the answer is still “hidden” from us!