I had the marvelous privilege of pastoring the First Baptist Church of Weaver, Alabama for seven years. It was one of the happiest periods of my life. The people were loving, supportive and caring. Weaver was not a large congregation, but it was a congregation with a big heart and a big vision. One of the things I dreamed of doing was hosting a “Great Preachers Event.” The church gave full support and we launched an event we called, “Great Preachers in America” which was held each fall. We saw and heard some of the greatest biblical expositors of my lifetime. To name a few who preached in this event: Dr. Stephen F. Olford, my friend and mentor for 35 years; Dr. David Olford, president of Olford Ministries International; Dr. Lewis Drummond, was, at the time Professor of Evangelism at Beeson Divinity School; Dr. Eric Alexander, Glasgow Scotland, a noted Keswick Speaker; Dr. John Phillips, Bible teacher and author of Exploring the Bible Commentaries; Dr. Fred Luter, pastor of the famed Franklin Ave. Baptist Church in New Orleans. Fred came to Weaver many times and became a great friend to our church family. Dr. Ben Haden was the first preacher to preach in the Great Preachers series and probably drew the largest crowd. Dr. Paige Patterson, president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary; Dr. Ted Traylor, pastor of Olive Baptist Church in Pensacola, and Dr. Tom Elliff, then president of the Southern Baptist Convention. And there were more…
In that period of time there were many young people in the church who were being drawn to a closer walk with the Lord…and to Gospel ministry. One of those young people was J.D. Weed. J.D. was an exceptional student, with a brilliant mind and a heart for God. He went to University of Mobile and then to Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is now pastor of the Union Baptist Church in Pamplico, SC. I will have the joy and privilege of spending a few days with J.D., his family and his congregation in October. I am praying that the Lord will abundantly bless our days of ministry together.
Pray for young men and women of our day who have given themselves to the Lord and His work. We live in difficult times. Those in the Lord’s work need renewed strength and courage everyday.