“Who Supported the Church?”

“I’m curious, and I’m ashamed. I wonder who has supported the church for this past number of years in the community where I live. I was in the hospital, and the preacher and the members of the church visited me, but I have been too busy to go to church since that time. My son attended the Bible school and wanted to be baptized. The preacher came to the house and talked to him and on Sunday night he was baptized. But I had too many other things to do to start attending. Then my daughter wanted to be married in the church building. The church elders and the preacher assisted in every possible way, and a group of church members provided the music necessary; and some of the church ladies had a shower for her in which she received so many nice things. But I still could see no need of bothering to start attending services. Who was I to-be needed?

“Then last week my wife became ill. Some of the ladies from the church sat with her through several nights. The elders, some of the deacons and the preacher called and offered their services and the services of the church. Then my wife died. Members of the church cleaned the house and provided food for those who came from a distance for the funeral. The preacher again was called upon to· render help in the greatest hour of need I have ever experienced. A group of singers also helped with the most beautiful songs I have ever heard.

“As 1 sit here tonight I wonder who has supported the church.

“Had it not been for them, there would have been no church, no building, no preacher and other members to provide the help 1 needed. How much 1 owe to those who have made it possible for me to avail myself of the services of the church which 1 have not supported!

“Yes, I am ashamed. 1 have not done my part when 1 could have done so much. Now 1 find myself unable to do nearly do nearly as much as I would like to do. 1Ihave wasted my life and my finances and my opportunities. Had others done no more than I have done, the community in which I have lived would have known nothing of the church.

“You perhaps are interested in my identity. I will not tell you my name, for I am ashamed. But 1 can tell you this much; 1 was once a member of the church as a young man. Then 1 left home and finally came here to live with my wife and baby, 1 have been all these years an erring member who refused to work for the Lord. You will, of course, not recognize me from this, for there are so many others just like me -- erring church members.” Author unknown.

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