Vol.XVII No.II Pg.1
April 1980

Lift Up Fallen Hands

Robert F. Turner

Little churches dying on the vine? That depends on saints in those little churches, but it is its not dictated by the size of the congregation. We must not use small numbers as an excuse for despair or idleness.

A Kentucky church of about 50 members has published a small, neat four-lesson correspondence course. They ran a 30 second commercial on radio, one per day, five days per week, for one month, varying the times of day to hit a wide audience. They had 100 requests for the correspondence study; and when they sent it out (all four in one mailing) they included a letter offering (1) an 8-lesson course, or, (2) an advanced 12-lesson series, or, (3) an "In the Home" film presentation of God's saving plan. There were 49 requests for one or the either of these.

The members are training to "man" the operation, a formidable task for so small a group, but they can do it. Following the Wednesday night class they were given bulletins and parts of a mailing list, and each sat down then and there to hand address them. There is something truly thrilling in seeing a group of saints working together. Such a church has already grown, even before numerical increase.

The new program will cost $1,200.00 annually — about what their present bulletin printing and mailing program takes, so they have decided to drop the bulletin mailing so they can afford the radio and correspondence work. It seems a wise choice. Those 50 members, ordinary working-class people, give over $600.00 per week now to further the Lord's work. Their capability will expand with prayerful, thoughtful use of what they now have (2 Cor. 8:15; 9:6).

A 500-member church in the same city has a quarter-million-plus budget ($9.86 per person, per week, compared with over $12 per person for the small church). We can't measure one church by another (2 Cor. 10:12), nor can we compare the dedication of individual hearts, but we commend the attitude of brethren in the small church toward God's word, and mankind. They remind us, anew, that God does not measure with man's yardstick.