Robert Zollinger Speaks About Little Things
The church service in the Laurelbrook Seventh-day Adventist Church on June 21, 2014 began with an introit by Melinda Pauls on the piano, followed by the announcements by Rodney Herra. There will be a potluck after the service at Jacqualine Miller’s home – there will be plenty of food.
Rodney Herra had the invocation, and welcomed everyone. The congregation then sang “The Lord in Zion Reigneth”, accompanied by Kendra (sophomore) on the piano. Rodney Herra then had the Morning Prayer; the congregation sang “Hear Our Prayer”, accompanied by Kendra on the piano. Paul Frechette and Daryll Ellis then collected the morning offerings; the loose offering went to the local church budget. The congregation sang the doxology, and Rodney Herra prayed for the offering.
Laura Mae Zollinger told the children present a story about the chickens she had when she was a child. Rodney Herra read the scripture reading.
New staff members Michelle and Bob Gustafson sang a vocal duet for special music accompanied by Michelle on the guitar. Before they sang, Michelle mentioned how special it was to get the call to Laurelbrook because his health was falling apart when he was on the road as a trucker. Their son T.J. (freshman for the 2015 school year) played “What Heavenly Music” on his clarinet.
Robert Zollinger then spoke on the topic “Little Foxes Spoil the Vine”. The congregation then sang “There’ll Be Joy By and By”. Rodney Herra had the closing prayer.
Personnel Other Than Students:
Daryll Ellis – Laurelbrook graduate working for nearby Majestic Stone Company / local church deacon
Laura Mae Zollinger – retired nurse living on the edge of the Laurelbrook property
Melinda Pauls – nurse / worked with the Laurelbrook Bells and the Laurelbrook Choir during the 2014 school year
Michelle and Bob Gustafson – newly arrived Laurelbrook staff members / he is scheduled to take over the vehicle shop
Paul Frechette – retired Laurelbrook business manager / local church deacon
Robert Zollinger – retired Laurelbrook president and board chairman
Rodney Herra – former Laurelbrook staff member working for nearby Majestic Stone Company / local head deacon / local church elder and temporary church treasure
Following are some notes on the sermon by Robert Zollinger:
- Song of Solomon 2:15 “Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines [have] tender grapes.”
- Ellen White says in her book In Heavenly Places that the little foxes are the neglect of things we are supposed to do, the deficiencies that creep into our Christian life and studies. This include little dishonesties we do without thinking.
- A little dishonesty is like leaving weeds in a row when we are asked to weed that row.
- Little dishonesties can also be little departures from principle as in food. Then we argue it is all right. This “blinds the soul and separates us from God”.
- If we don’t do the little things right, we won’t do the big things either and won’t be prepared for the tests we will encounter in life.
- We are not going to be prepared for the big trials right ahead of us if we don’t do the little things.
- Little things in life develop the spirit and character of the person. Character is the only thing we can take to heaven from this earth.
- What will happen if we neglect the little things? Life is made up of doing little things. The faithful performance of these tiny things makes up life’s happiness. Neglect of little things poisons our happiness.
- Who’s responsible for our happiness? It’s not income or talents that makes happiness.
- What can we do about all the little things we can do? Doing little things fits us for further and bigger responsibilities.
- We should feel when doing humble tasks that we are doing a very honorable work.
- God’s plan is for each of us to our very best with the humble tasks in life. We should feel we are doing a necessary and honorable work when doing little tasks set before us. It’s just as honorable as the Angel Gabriel’s work before God and contacting prophets and other men on earth.
- These little things are our mission on earth. We’re always looking for something bigger and better, but the present work we have is our mission.
- If we do these tiny things, our record in heaven will be clean. God could send someone else to do these jobs, but these jobs prepare us for a place in heaven.
- Our mission are the tiny tasks we face each day, the duties that lie before us. We should keep committed to God and watch for indications of His providence.
- In order to have an experience like this, we must realize the greatness of God and the relationship we need.
- Ellen White says that the “house of God on earth is the gate to heaven”.
- Habakkuk 2:20 “But the LORD [is] in his holy temple: let all the earth keep silence before him.”
- God deals and walks with us in a quiet manner.
- What poisons the life against God is an unwillingness to do the little things God quietly presents to us. This unwillingness creates a separation between our souls and God.
- This little church here is a sacred place where we learn how to relate to God here and in heaven. Neglect of attendance at church services means we neglect to connect with God at His appointed times.
- At His services, we should pass quietly to our seats and extent this quiet before and after His services. We should spend any idle time during these services in prayer to God. We will then feel God is here.
- When the meeting opens, we should all kneel down in prayer to God.
- Bringing in a band and creating a stir chases away the Holy Spirit, according to Ellen White.
- The church sanctuary should be a sacred place where people connect with God – no foolishness.
- The church must be instructed on these points, or the minister has neglected his duty.
- Only those who understand the simplicity of God and His worship or His commands will go through to heaven.
- Let’s ask God to help us take stock of how we treat the little things.