ONLINE CHURCH BULLETIN
Bart had been perhaps the most hard-working salesman in his company's history – at least in recent memory. He usually spent sixty-five to seventy-five hours a week at the office when he wasn't traveling. And when he was on the road, his weekly hours could run as high as ninety. Of course, no one complained about his schedule. If anything, others were jealous of his success. He generated incredible revenues, beating all other sales representatives hands down year after year. And his lifestyle showed off his success. His suits were top of the line, he bought a new car every two years, and his house was worth half a million, not to mention the value of the ten acres of prime real estate on which the house sat. He was even married to one of the most beautiful women in town, and he had two children, both of whom were doing well in school. Of course, he made sure that his family had every material desire they wanted. What more did he (or they) need?
Friends! Male friends. He spent so much time working and winning in the marketplace that he had no time to spend developing friendships with other men. Certainly he knew many people at work, and he came in contact daily with clients who relied on him and his expertise. But no one knew Bart – no one really knew him deep inside. In fact, Bart had even lost touch with himself. He was so busy achieving and conquering that he came to believe he was what he did. Performance was his identity. If he wasn't selling a client, he was developing sales pitches and ad ideas that would win future clients. Nothing else really mattered to Bart. This was all he lived for.
Then Bart retired. He walked out of the office after receiving one of the grandest retirement parties his company had ever thrown. He had worked hard for more than forty years. Now he looked forward to enjoying all the wealth and prestige he had acquired over the years. But he ended up enjoying it all alone. Frustrated and hurt from years of neglect, his lovely wife left him. And his children, who had since left home to begin their own lives, rarely visited him. They really didn't know him, and he didn't know them well either. He had never had the time to spend with them while they were growing up. Now, they didn't have the time, or the inclination, to spend with him. The few times they managed to get together, conversation waned after only a few minutes, so visits were largely conducted on the telephone,– about once every two or three months, and then calls lasted only about fifteen minutes.
Lonely, Bart tried to keep up a few relationships he had with some of his former co-workers. They would get together to talk shop, but soon they had little time for him since they were busy meeting the demands of their jobs, just as he had done during his working years. Within a year of his retirement, Bart became a stranger – or was he in some sense always a stranger? – at the company for which he had spent his life diligently working. Feeling unwanted and unneeded, he stopped coming around. Calls from his kids also grew more infrequent. Bart was alone – friendless.
BEGINNING NEXT SUNDAY, IN ROOM 1 4, THERE WILL . BE A CLASS BEGINNG ON "FRIENDSHIP FACTOR". THIS CLASS WILL DEAL WITH SUCH TOPICS AS "HOW TO CHOOSE A FRIEND" "HOW TO BE A FRIEND" 'RELATIONSHIP MAINTENANCE" AS WELL AS OTHERS. You are invited to come and tudy what the Bible teaches about the "FRIENDSHIP FACTOR".
For His Cause,