"How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things." Romans 10:15
As far back as I can remember I had a strong desire to become a gospel preacher. To better prepare for this great work, I enrolled in David Lipscomb College in September 1941. On November 30,1941, I was invited to preach my first sermon at the Marrow Bone Lake congregation, Nashville, Tennessee. I received $1.00 for this first sermon and felt somewhat rich. The following Sunday, December 7, 1941, I was invited to preach for the New Union congregation, Manchester, TN, and they employed me to preach the balance of two years. Pay was $5.00 per Sunday.
After graduating from Lipscomb, I continued my schooling at Harding College, Searcy, Arkansas. In each of these schools, I was blessed to sit at the feet of teachers who really believed the Bible to be God's inspired Word. I was encouraged to memorize much scripture.
I returned to my home state of Florida and was invited to locate at Cross City, FL. Money was scarce and I received $10.00 per week. In addition to preaching in over 700 meetings, I've done twenty-five years of located work in Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia, and Florida.
Travel has been by car, train, bus, and jet. Many years ago, I was sometimes picked up at railroad stations by horse and wagon to be taken to my stay place. Hospitality was abundant, and I was blessed to stay in hundreds of Christian homes. Motels hadn't cranked up. For over 40 years, I was blessed to have the opportunity to travel and preach in many countries around the world. Regardless of nationality, once people hear and obey the gospel, they become a part of God's great family. Mark 16:15, 16
Yes, I've seen changes. Years ago, meetings continued two, three, and four weeks with souls obeying the Gospel at most services. At least 90% of congregations had elders and deacons. Liberalism was rarely heard of. In 1946, I located with the church at Gallipolis, OH and soon met a number of faithful preachers throughout the Ohio Valley. These men loved one another and ably contended for "The Old Paths." Preacher jealousy was rarely seen. Most of these good men have already fallen asleep. At age 83 I'm thankful to be physically able to keep a busy schedule of preaching.
Brethren have been very good to me, and I sincerely appreciate all of the many congregations who have invited me to fill their pulpits. I would gladly preach another 64 years if it were possible. When I come to the end of the way, hopefully, I will be able to say what Paul said. 2 Timothy 4: 6-8 P.O. Box 302, Gallipolis, OH 45631.
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