The Gospel Preacher

Doris Long

Written for and respectfully dedicated to Bro. Fred Dennis and his beloved wife, Bess, June 13th 1978 by Doris Long.

He started out as a teacher, 

when he was young, and straight, and strong,

And he was a very fine one, too, 

but he didn’t teach very long.

The Lord had a greater work for him, 

so he traveled far and wide,

Warning people to flee from sin, 

all ’round the countryside.

Sometimes the going was pretty rough, 

and his pay was rather slim,

But he always seemed to have enough, 

and the Lord took care of him.

He traveled around from state to state, 

wherever he had a chance to teach,

And folks would come for miles around 

to hear Bro. Dennis preach!

His “beloved Bess” just kept her home, 

and raised a big family;

Tho her work was often very hard, 

she did it happily.

She never complained of being tied down, 

or that she wished to be free,

With a smile on her lips and faith in the Lord, 

she did her tasks cheerfully.

Many years have now gone by, 

since he began to preach,

But Bro. Dennis still travels about, 

seeing how many souls he can reach.

He isn’t quite as straight and strong, 

and his steps may be getting slow,

But his faith in God keeps him moving along, 

and he wants the whole world to know.

He’s a faithful soldier of the cross, 

and as long as God gives him breath,

He intends to fight the “good fight of faith” 

until his eyes close in death.

For he would rather die preaching God’s word, 

than sitting with folded hands,

We have often heard him express this wish, 

as he preaches across the land.

May God give him strength and health and love, 

to keep on sowing the seed,

And grant him an abundant harvest of souls, 

and supply his every need.

And when at last his work is done, 

and the Father welcomes them in,

I’m sure God will have a special place in heaven 

for his “beloved Bess” and him.

(Editor’s note: This poem was submitted by Judy and Bob Strahin, 401 Center St., Elkins, WV 26241. Sister Doris Long, the author, was Judy’s mother. Sister Long and her husband, Earle. were long-time faithful members of the Elkins church of Christ, and we are honored to publish her tribute to brother Dennis.)

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