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A story that continues to repeat itself far too often!

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

             I recently ran across this story called, "A Judge's Haunting Words" by an anonymous writer. "I went to Bible classes when I was small and learned all about God. After I was married I decided to go again and take my children. I couldn't persuade my husband to go, but the children and I went regularly for a year. Then I skipped a Sunday. And soon I skipped two or three. Then we went only on special days. Soon I joined a bowling team that competed on Sunday. I could go to worship and Bible classes, but I would have to give up bowling. Bowling won the battle.

Not long ago in a courtroom, I heard the judge say, "Twenty years!" He was pronouncing a sentence on my 21-year-old son for a robbery that ended in the death of a man. The sentence might have been less, but my son took a sneering, defiant attitude all through the trial; ridiculing every officer and official in the courtroom.

But the crowning, shocking climax came when the judge sternly asked, "Young man, don't you believe in God?"

My son laughed and said, "God? Who's that?" Every person in the courtroom turned to look at me. If only I had those years to live over! I would attend Bible classes and worship services faithfully and make sure my children attended as well.

I wonder how many times parents have made this same statement? If only they could turn back the clock and put God first in their marriages and in their children's lives. In far too many cases the damages are already done. Make no mistake about it!

We are rearing a new generation of children who literally have no clue concerning God because the generation before them didn't teach them! Children will not of their own volition learn about the Lord. God places children in our care to bring them up "in the nurture and admonition of the Lord." (Eph. 6:4).

Parents must wake up before some judge places a jail sentence upon their children. We will all give an account to God one day for our young ones. If our children lose their souls for all eternity, we would feel terrible, and yet, we can start by training them in the ways of God. We must begin with ourselves first! See you in church this Lord's Day?   

(Daily Devotional By J. Raymond Pecoraro Wooddale Church of Christ )

The Bystander Effect

Friday, February 18, 2022


Written by: Brett Petrillo (BP)
A tragic situation unfolded on the streets of Queens, New York on March 13, 1964.  As she was returning home from work, Kitty Genovese was brutally stabbed outside her apartment building. Many neighbors heard her screaming out in a panic, but only one man shouted out his window, “Let that girl alone.”  That was all he did.  Her attacker fled when the man called out but returned ten minutes later where he searched for her, found her, and finished her off.  If this situation isn’t appalling enough, what makes it much worse is the fact that about 37 witnesses either heard or saw the attack and yet did nothing.
This murder intrigued two young psychologists to find out what people are willing or not willing to do in an emergency situation.  They discovered something that is today identified as the “bystander effect.”  In their experimentation, they found that when only one bystander is present, 85% of people offered help.  When two were present, 62% of people offered help.  And when five were present, only 31% of people offered help (Wrightsman).  Surely this percentage lowers further when more are around.
What is the most dangerous about the “bystander effect” is the fact that everyone thinks someone else is going to help. We may not be witnessing murders or theft, but it makes one wonder if the church is being crippled by the “bystander effect.”  We are surrounded by and living in a world of spiritual emergencies, and yet far too often we sit back and think that someone else is going to do the evangelizing.  Perhaps part of the problem is understanding what evangelism is all about.
Evangelism is about community.  If we are all working together to create an environment that is friendly and inviting, then people will come to find acceptance among us.  We will become like a family.  It takes more than one or two people to create a community like this.  It’s going to take everyone trying and working together as a congregation.
Evangelism is about relationships. You can build relationships with people you know and slowly show them the Lord. Even if you have no idea how to lead a Bible study, your friendship with the person could be what brings them to our friendly community of Christians who eventually could lead them to Christ. But it has to start with you and this has to be on purpose.
Evangelism is about bravery. It’s easy to sit and do nothing. It’s hard to step out of our comfort zones. We are talking about spiritual emergencies here though! We’re talking about saving people from eternal punishment.  We’re not going to bring people to the Lord overnight, but let’s be brave and start slowly building our relationships with our friends and start pointing them to the Lord.
Evangelism is about effort. Few know how to lead a Bible study, and that’s alright, but we need to stop using our lack of knowledge as an excuse to do nothing. Let’s study diligently so we don’t have to use our lack of knowledge as an excuse for a lack of effort. Let’s just set up a study and have someone else lead it. Let’s bring our friends to events so others can help bring them to the lord. Let’s offer to sit in as a “silent partner” with someone who is already leading a study so that we can learn how to do a study. There is a lot we can do, but it’s going to take effort.
Jesus clearly taught, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:19-20).
This isn’t your job. This isn’t my job. This is OUR job.

Spell Love

Monday, February 14, 2022
Here is today's Minute Message.  It has been posted online for you to listen to when you like, it only takes a minute.

Thank you, 
Mark T. Tonkery

Go on; Go on!

Friday, January 28, 2022

Tonk Talk by Mark T. Tonkery 

The French physicist, Arago ascribes his success to words found on the cover of a book when greatly discouraged.  They were, “Go on, sir; go on! The difficulties you meet will resolve themselves as you advance.  Proceed, and light will dawn and shine with increased clearness on your path,” written by D’Alembert.  “That maxim,” says Arago, “was my greatest master in mathematics.”  Following out these simple words, “Go on, sir; go on!” made him the first astronomical mathematician of his age.

What Christians it would make of us!  What heroes of faith, what sages in holy wisdom, should we become, by acting out that maxim, “Go on sir; go on!” (Author Unknown).

We may be very discouraged today by all the things that are happening in our world, but we must never give up!  We must continue on, especially when it comes to our precious faith.

Notice these words of encouragement from scripture to remind us to “Go on; Go on!”

· Php. 3:14, “I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

· Rom. 8:37, “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”

· 1 Jn. 5:4, “For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.”

· Jos. 1:9, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” 


Arago was encouraged by the words of a mere man and accomplished great things in the field of mathematics.  We have the words of God, God-breathed words, words inspired by the Holy Spirit, how much more should we be encouraged and willing to do great things in the Lord’s name!

Christian now is the time to keep going and growing in our faith.  It is always too early to quit, so don’t give up!  “Go on, Christian; Go on!”






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Friday, January 28, 2022

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