Gus Nichols preached for nearly half a century in Jasper, Alabama. During the time he was there, the church grew and became a very powerful influence throughout that area. The church was deeply respected for the many lives which were changed through its evangelistic efforts.
He once described the most effective gospel meeting they ever had and the method they used to advertise it. Before the meeting began, the members were told they would not be using radio, TV or the newspaper to let others know what was happening. In fact, they did not give the members any flyers to hand out to others. The thrust of the effort was, “If people in Walker County even know that we are having this gospel meeting, that information must come from you.”
Now think about it for a moment. Is it that hard to understand why that meeting was the best attended meeting the church had ever had? There is nothing personal about hearing of an event on the radio. The same is true of television advertising. Nor is there anything personal about reading a flyer or newspaper ad. These are wonderful ways of conveying information but are so “cold.”
Is there anything more persuasive than someone giving you a personal invitation? Especially if the event has no strings attached and is entirely for the benefit of the person invited. I cannot think of anything more persuasive. However, suppose it were possible to combine both kinds of advertising. Imagine the impact when there is extensive use of commercial means of advertising in addition to a personal invitation. This dual approach is precisely what we have planned for the upcoming “The Silencing of God” Seminar.
So many of you have taken flyers to post on local bulletin boards or in shop windows. Others have used the cards provided to hand to those you know. Literally hundreds of letters have been mailed to every church of Christ in south Florida, to every denomination in Palm Beach County and to every elected local, state and federal official in this area. In the next few days, there will be radio commercials and five large ads in the Palm Beach Post.
We are counting on every member of Palm Beach Lakes to add to this the most effective advertising and that is a personal invitation to others. We will never have this opportunity again. May God help us to have eyes to see what can be done!