Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Sweet People Who Believe Their Own Publicity

First Baptist Church of Alamo has some really sweet church members. FBCA has some folks who really do want to do the right thing. I have known many of those sweet people for several decades and through the ministries of several pastors and several church building programs.
I read recently about a singer who was very popular in the 1970s. He was featured on some website. At the end of his interview, he gave a quote that I thought was something we should all remember:

"Don't Believe Your Own Publicity"

Another quote by Demosthenes from an earlier post on this blog was similar:

"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true."

Every time someone talks about the new building, I expect to hear their concern about and desires of "reaching lost people" since that's how the church website promoted the new church building. I was surprised and disappointed when, instead of talking about evangelism, I hear church members say things like like:

"...this building is 80 years old"
"...this building is falling apart"
"...we need more room"
"...we need more parking"

To this day, I have NEVER heard even ONE person tell me:

"We need the new building to reach lost people."

Never! Not even one time! Not from the pastor. Not from any person on the church staff. Not from even a single church member. Not one time.

Several years ago, someone (and I know who) began a publicity campaign (their own publicity) claiming the building is old, claiming the building is falling apart, claiming we need more parking and claiming the ONLY solution is to move away and build a new building. The publicity campaign seems to have convinced many non-critical thinking members, who believed the stories and half truths instead of looking more objective as to the motive behind the campaign.

Thomas Paine once said:

"It is error only, and not truth, that shrinks from inquiry."

So why have so many sweet church members stopped investigating other solutions? Why have so many sweet church members decided to believe that publicity campaign instead of the truth? Why have so many sweet church members decided to go along with the "herd mentality" instead of walking the streets, knocking on doors and actually reaching lost people?

I agree 100% with Susan B. Anthony who said:

"I distrust those people who know so well what God wants them to do because I notice it always coincides with their own desires."
Unfortunately, the person with the strongest desires is often the one who can convince the most people to follow his ideas. It is often the person with the most passion who can convince the most people that HIS DESIRES are actually "GOD'S WILL" apart from truth that proves otherwise. That person convinces the people to follow his ideas not based upon the truth of the situation, not based upon facts, but based upon their own passion on an issue.

Facts be ignored and truth be tossed away or split in half.

You can can see how it works in a presidential race. You can see how it works in a church building program. Passion wins over truth almost every time. That's why there is MORE PROMOTION of the building fund than of reaching lost people. That's why there is more talk from the pulpit about raising money for the building than talk from the pulpit about personally reaching lost people for Christ.

The banners in front of the church tell how much money we have raised, don't they. The banners in front of the church DO NOT TELL HOW MANY LOST PEOPLE HAVE BEEN REACHED, do they? Do you believe the publicity? Do you believe two to four million dollars are needed "to reach lost people?"

Do you believe it will take two million dollars "to reach lost people?" Can you say FBCA will NOT "reach lost people" without spending $2,000,000 to $4,000,000?? Do you believe that? Do you REALLY believe that?

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