Dr. Howard Thurman, clergyman and scholar, who once appeared on “Life” magazine’s list of “Ten Best Preachers in America,” had an uncommon sympathy for people who slept during the sermon. He said that when he was still a young preacher, he would notice a certain woman who slept through his sermon every Sunday, without exception. This distracted him severely, until the day he made a pastoral call on the woman at her home. He arrived in midafternoon and was greeted by the sounds of several small children running in and out of the kitchen, slamming doors and making demands on the mother. The telephone was ringing, the washing machine was on the spin-dry cycle, the dog was barking and the woman was trying to quickly get dinner started in the oven. He saw the kind of turmoil she lived in and realized that at this particular stage in her life, probably the best thing the Church could give her was a quiet, comfortable place to…
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