Summary: Funeral for Retired Preacher
Song 1 – My God and I – Family Enters
Song 2 – Paradise Valley
25 “Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. 26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself. 27 And he has given him authority to execute judgment, because he is the Son of Man. 28 Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.
Purpose of Funerals
1. Comfort a Family
2. Reconnect with Priorities – This is the day for which we prepare and that Neil did
3. Funerals help us remember the realities: certainty of death; shortness of life; sovereignty of God
4. Remember and Honor a loved one – SO MANY STORIES about Neil!
Neil was an honorable man to whom honor is due
Song 3 – Sing and Be Happy
Obituary and Prayer – Gene Newberry
Song 4 – Home of the Soul
2 Peter 1.3-11
Neil the Preacher – He Loved to Preach the Word of God
Men tend to get their sense of identity from the jobs they do. Accountant; Police; Preacher
[Gift say right thing @ right time with right tone
“How do you know if you are called to preach? – If you can keep from it, you are not called.
• Encourager (Barnabas) – Follow your dreams and passions – always do your best
• [Neil had 5 Brothers and a sister – he and 4 brothers were Preachers –
• Once in Cleburne, TX they held a “Cosgrove Gospel Meeting” – each brother took a night
• Played a game – quote a verse – the next brother quoted the verse before; the next brother, the one after; finally, one brother would quote the entire chapter and end the game
• When they got together, they swapped sermon ideas and stories
• Today the brothers are together telling preacher stories and swapping sermons; remembering the many people they baptized
Neil embraced his calling 100%
• He had been encouraged to preach when he was a child and so he gave it serious thought
• In addition to sermons and adult classes, he also taught a children’s class each Sunday PM before services. He taught the children 4 facts/week and reviewed them each week. Before long those children knew hundreds of bible facts. On one occasion Avon Malone from OC was holding a meeting there and watched his class. When he finished he asked AM how he would like to have freshmen coming to OC with good bible knowledge. AM told him he wished his seniors had that same knowledge.
• He loved VBS and in Maysville, he challenged the children to bring guests to VBS – they would be “Fishers of Men.” As a reward, if they brought guests, they would get a goldfish to take home. On the Friday night of VBS, the auditorium was packed with kids and parents got a great surprise as their children came out with a goldfish for each guest they had brought.
Preaching is not always serious:
• On one occasion he told the congregation that he would not be greeting them as they left – it was almost time for the Cowboys to play football so he would be exiting the side door to his car and going home
• Once he disappeared as soon as the sermon was over – came out of his office – he had somehow ripped his pants so he sidestepped off stage and went to his office to wait for everyone to leave before coming out.
• At Elk City one icy, snowy day he decided to get to church early to help others in who may have need assistance. He stopped the van in the parking lot and the family got out. When they turned to ask him something, eh had disappeared. They finally found him – under the van, holding on as he had slipped on the ice and slid under.
• Returning from a mission trip to California from Yukon he tossed bad sandwiches out of his car that landed on the cars behind him – people still remember and laugh about the flying sandwiches.
Through Preaching He Understood the Importance of People Knowing Jesus – It Makes All the Difference
Touch of the Master’s Hand
'Twas battered and scarred,
And the auctioneer thought it
hardly worth his while