I became a Christian on June 22, 1988. I simply made a simple decision. I asked Jesus Christ to come into my life and He did, and I changed. I mean I changed big time. I am a recovering alcoholic, used to experiment with drugs, was involved in the lives of many females, and I could go on and on, but I won’t.
If anyone needed Christ, it was me. By the way, I was 46 years old when I got saved. It is never too late. I haven’t lived nearly as long on this side of the fence as I did on the other side, but the life I’ve lived for these years I wouldn’t trade with anyone.
Coach Wood loved to hang out at Palace Drug with his “crew” and I vividly remember after Gordon had visited with me and I talked to him about my change in life. He said at the coffee booth one day, “I’ve known a lot of people that got religion, but Dallas got it real bad, and that’s real good.”
I spent the first 10 years or so of my so-called Christian life reading the Bible, visiting with people, going to classes, and stuff like that. But, I knew that the Lord wanted me to preach. I gave Him all kinds of excuses, and He threw them right back at me. I finally one night in prayer said, “Lord, if you give me the opportunity, I’ll do it.”
Well lo and behold, about a week or two later, a man came up to me at church, at First Baptist Church in Brownwood, and said, “Dallas, I do a Sunday morning sermon at one of the nursing homes here in Brownwood, and I’m going to be out next Sunday so I wonder if you would mind filling in for me?”
I gave him all the excuses I gave the Lord, and he finally said, “Will you do it or not?” I said, “I’ll do it.”
The next Sunday morning I went to the nursing home. I stood there in the common area as the residents of the nursing home came in. They had the residents about three rows deep sitting in chairs, had a lady playing the piano and a supervisor standing in back of the residents. This nice woman played the piano for a while and then the supervisor gets up and introduced me and so I step up there and I start preaching to them as best I can.
I get about five minutes in and this very elderly lady in the front row leans back and yells at the top of her voice, “Somebody tell him to shut up!” I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t have to know what to do because that’s when these nice little ladies took over. One of them in the back grabbed her purse and hit the lady who yelled in the head, and then they all started fighting and arguing and pushing for probably about five minutes.
The supervisor has to call for help and the nurses finally got them all separated and back in place. After it had calmed down, the supervisor said, “Mr. Huston, you can continue.” And I did the only thing I knew to do. I simply said, “Let’s pray.”
When I finished that prayer I got out of there as quick as I could and I said, “Lord, don’t ever do this to me again.” But He did. Fact is, many times. But, I never got heckled again. At least, not while preaching.
Almost every preacher can tell you of a similar experience. The bottom line is this: When you say ‘yes’ to the Lord, hang on because your life will never be boring again.
Until next time, so long everybody.
‘Out of the Box’ with Dallas Huston is published each Monday morning at BrownwoodNews.com. Dallas was the radio voice of the Brownwood Lions and Howard Payne Yellow Jackets for more than 55 years. He currently is Pastor of Center City Baptist Church and hosts a Men’s Bible Study in Brownwood on Monday evenings. Your comments are welcome at firstname.lastname@example.org.