There were times when dad was preaching or teaching a class, that things just didn’t go according to plan. Obviously preaching is an exciting way of serving the Lord, and well worth the struggles involved. It takes a special person, or maybe I should say, a special Lord working through a very usable “vessel”. Even then, sometimes things just don’t go ‘as planned’. You just have to laugh, and we all did.
1. One time dad was preaching, he had a dark brown blazer on over his white shirt and tie. His pants were light brown. Well, he needed to use the bathroom, so before he got up to speak he went to the bathroom. Problem, it went down his slacks. He had one side light brown, and the other ‘dark’. Thinking fast, he ‘innovated’, took off his pants, soaked them in water so they looked dark brown (along with his dark blazer). Then he returned to the auditorium to speak. He started a with dark brown blazer and dark pants, and when he finished, his pants had dried out and were light brown.
2. One time, dad had to speak and he had a terrible cold. His throat was sore, and he had to clear his throat. Well if you were around dad a lot, you would know how that sounds. This time, he had started speaking but could not keep going… He excused himself to the bathroom and cleared his throat. “Hoooiiiiccckkk”. It was terrible of course. He came back to the class and heard everyone laughing. He discovered he had left his microphone on and every gross sound he made, was broadcast over the speakers.
3. While in Calgary, Alberta, Canada – He got up to speak and made a special announcement about Sister Brown. “Good to have Sister Brown back with us this morning. She was being checked for cancer, and the AUTOPSY reported the cysts were benign.”
4. Another time he was speaking and had a great lesson going about the second coming of Jesus. He was quoting from Revelation 22:7, 12 where Jesus says, “I am coming quickly” (KJV). He made that statement (I come quickly!), rushing toward the pulpit, and pointing his finger toward the audience. Then it happened, he forgot what he was going to say next. So he decided to try it again. He back up and went at the pulpit, pointed his finger at the audience, and said, “Behold I come quickly!!!” Again he could not remember what came next. One last time he backed up and determined to put everything in it. He rushed at the pulpit, just about to say those famous words, and tripped over the carpet, knocked over the pulpit, stumbled, and landed in an old lady’s lap who was sitting on the front row. His face was red, the lesson was destroyed, everyone was shocked and quiet, the pulpit was knocked over, and there he sat, red faced, apologizing in this lady’s lap. “I’m so sorry, I don’t know what happened” he said. She looked at him and said, “It’s OK sonny, you done warned me three times.”
5. Speaking on the subject of “How to raise your kids right”, making the point that if parents are not consistent, and allow their children to disrespect their authority, and the authority of teachers, that they won’t respect the law later in life. Then he raised a blank pistol, and said, “You may as well just give them a gun.” Well, he made the mistake of going a bit far with his illustration… and pointed it at his head and pulled the trigger… To te shock of everyone… most of all, dad… there was a blank in the pistol, and it went off. What a noise. It’s hard to imagine what went through dad’s mind then. Probably thought, “I’m glad it was a blank!” Anyway, after the lesson, a young boy came up to him as he was getting all his stuff together, and said, “I know you didn’t mean for that to happen. You’re too smart to do that twice.”
6. While speaking one time, Dad was really hungry. He had preached over-time (I know your minister never does that), as he was preaching, he was thinking about eating fried chicken with potatoes and gravy. He ended his lesson by reading a song. “Rescue the perishing care for the dying, snatch the poor sinner from sin and the gravy!” (instead of grave).
We remember dad would be relaxing in his big blue recliner as he told us about these times, and others, and we all just laughed till we cried. People who take themselves too seriously and cannot laugh at themselves, are people who are touchy, sensitive and hard to be around. Learn the lesson… you’re not perfect…