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For many years a country church in Iowa set aside one Sunday annually for youth to conduct the entire service. The young people did it all; call to worship, invocation, prayer, special music, announcements, choir, and one young person would deliver the sermon. One year a 16 year old boy was told that it was “his year.” He practiced for days until he could give the sermon with the help of just a few notes written on one side of a three by five index card. Sunday morning arrived. The other youths did their parts exceptionally well. When it was time, the young man walked to the pulpit- and his mind went blank. He looked at the index card, spoke for two minutes, and sat down. As the congregation sang the closing hymn, the young man thought, “I am never going to speak in public again, absolutely, positively not.” As the service ended the young man dashed for the exit, only to be stopped by a man named Dale Bockes. Mr. Bockes said, “Son that was a fine job.” And the lad said, “Fine job? Why I only went about two minutes.” “Yes,” said Mr. Bockes, “but you said it so well. It was so clear. You are a good speaker. I look forward to hearing you again.” And the next year, that young man spoke again. Now, John Kline, that young man, is a motivational speaker who speaks worldwide. Mr. Bockes was a great encourager.

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