Fine Print

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Dear Linwood Friends and Friends of Linwood,

I made a reservation for a rental car for a little trip Jan and I are going to be taking later in the fall.  I decided to print the confirmation page that had been e-mailed to me.  I still like to have a piece of paper in my hand when I walk up to the rental counter at the end of a long flight.  The printer printed three pages, although I knew that I was probably only interested in the first one.  I pulled them out of the printer looked at the top of the second page and was greeted by these words:

Important:  This isn’t simply “fine print” our lawyers asked us to include.  This information will also prepare you to bring everything you’ll need to pick up your rental.  (We know it seems like a lot to read, but reviewing it now can save you a lot of time later!)  Please read before pick up…because we really want you to be happy with your Budget experience.  See you soon!

This little statement got me thinking.

With just a little reworking this statement could easily be used by God as an introduction to the Scriptures.  For instance…

Important:  This book isn’t just a collection of old stories, endless lists of strange names, and the wisdom and morality of people who lived in the ancient world.  This book will prepare you with everything you need to know to live life as it was intended today.  (I know it seems like a lot to read, but reviewing it now can save you enormous grief and pain in the future!)  Please read it before you head too far into your life…because I really want you to be happy, not only with your life here but also in eternity!  See you soon!

Today we have at our fingertips so much information – so much to read – far more than any of us could ever review.  For most of us the Bible gets thrown into that huge pot of news, communications, and information.  I am sure that it was much easier when the Bible was the only book (or perhaps one of a few books) that was found in a household.

I simply want to remind you and encourage you.

I want to remind you that in this age of information overload, the Scriptures remain the best, the most reliable, the most trustworthy, and the most life-giving information that we can read, study, and take into our lives.

And, I want to encourage you.  There are many ways to incorporate the Scriptures into your daily lives.  Use a Bible devotional book each day; commit to a plan to read through the Scriptures in a year; join a Bible study group; start a Bible study group; take a Bible class at your church; read a Psalm a day and a chapter of Proverbs a day; memorize one verse each week and keep it before you each day.

I have a confession to make.  I have not yet read the “fine print” on the car rental confirmation pages.  Why?  Let me list the reasons:

  • I have been rather busy.
  • I have rented cars before.
  • I already know what it will say.
  • I doubt if anything important has changed.
  • I read previously the fine print of some other car rental companies and they are all about the same.
  • A friend (who went to law school and ought to know) told me that no matter what they say it really is “fine print” and not really that important.
  • And finally, they will tell me what I really need to know when I arrive to pick up the car!

This e-mail is getting a little long so I will let you do the translating from my excuses for not reading the fine print on the car rental contract to our excuses for not reading the Scriptures on a regular basis.

Hope you can join with us this Sunday.  It is the last Sunday morning service of the season.  We will close our season with the Lord’s Supper and the Linwood Tabernacle Choir will sing.  We would love to have you join with us in the choir.  There are two rehearsals – Thursday morning at 9:30 a.m. in the Chapel and Sunday morning at 9:45 a.m. in the Tabernacle.  Sunday evening is the annual Pioneer Service in the tabernacle at 7:00 p.m.

God’s richest blessings on all of you,
Hu Auburn, Linwood Park Pastor

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