The movers are coming this morning to pack everything in our home in Benton. They will load everything tomorrow on the truck. On Wednesday they deliver it and unload it at 13 Busqueda Lane in Hot Springs Village! Then the fun begins, unpacking, they don’t do that part!
I still vividly remember getting on my knees beside my bed several nights in a row in the fall of 1972. It was the beginning of my Senior year in high school. I asked God one question over and over, “What do you want me to do with my life?” For many nights in September and October I laid myself open to God for Him to do whatever he pleased.
Gradually the word came. Only one word. The still quiet voice of God spoke to me. “Preach.”
Uh, Lord, I don’t know anybody in my family that’s a preacher. “Preach.” Uh, Lord, preachers have to stand up there for a LONG time and talk to people. “Preach.” Uh, Lord, those guys are really boring most of the time. “Preach.” Uh, Lord, don’t you want me to stay in Glenwood and sell groceries with my Dad for the rest of my life? “Preach.” Uh, Lord, I don’t know how to do that. “Preach.”
After about two months of that, I said I would.
On the second Sunday morning in November 1972, I walked down the aisle from the youth section at the back of the church. I took my pastor, Bro. Jimmie Taylor, by the hand and said, “God has called me to preach.”
No one except God knew I was going to do that. My pastor was pleased and said he saw God working in me. My parents were SO surprised, they had no idea! I had no idea what I was getting into.
God told Abraham to go. Where Lord? Just go. So he did. That’s what I did.
Four years of college at Ouachita majoring in what preacher boys majored in, “Religion.” God imported for me a precious girl all the way from Pinetop, Arizona to Glenwood, Arkansas (I was pretty much kin to everyone else in Glenwood) for me to marry. What a God-send she is! She is my completer and balancer. (I love you, Sweetheart!)
Six years as a children’s minister while working 50 hours a week at my Dad’s grocery store. Our life-long mentoring relationship began with Bruce and Whanda Swihart. Then began four years as a youth minister while going to seminary in Fort Worth. We moved back to Arkansas and pastored at Bradley and El Dorado. Sixteen wonderful years at the Arkansas Baptist State Convention as a “missionary” in my home state preaching, teaching, and consulting in over 800 churches. I really thought I would retire there. Then Roy Henderson called.
Now over 40 years of ministry has come to a new chapter. You people at Balboa Baptist Church have welcomed us with such loving arms, we are reeling with amazement! I came with fear and trepidation. Billie Sue was just excited to get back into a church.
Last night, an ordination service for Victor, Roger, and Charles as deacons, was another HIGH MOMENT in the first month of ministry with you! WOW! God really showed up!
You have far exceeded our expectations. God bless you! Thank-you for calling us to this new chapter in our lives.
WELL, I GUESS I BETTER GET UP FROM THIS LAPTOP AND GET TO PACKIN’!
So, Psalm 16:11 (ESV) rings special this morning …
You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”
Our Father, thank-you for the ability to look back and see your hand in each chapter of our path of life. Thank-you for the fullness of joy. Thank-you that we can look forward with confidence that Your hand will continue to always be there! We look forward to eternity at your right hand enjoying Your pleasures forevermore! Now, please help me pack and move.