It was the best of times when in 1946, as an eleven year boy in a small school cloakroom in Lake City, Florida, the Holy Spirit convicted me of my sin and the Lord Jesus Christ welcomed me into the family of the redeemed. At least, this is the time when I had assurance that I was a child of His. There was no preaching, no Bible study, and nobody was witnessing to me. A rather unlikely circumstance surrounded that special evening; the Asbury College Choir was singing in the auditorium and I felt a deep conviction about my spiritual condition. I knelt down and asked God to save me if I wasn’t already saved. Although my Mom and Dad had previously introduced the plan of salvation to me, it wasn’t until that warm evening in Lake City that I settled my eternal destiny.
My Dad and Mom, both graduates of Moody Bible Institute, were delighted with my profession of faith. They were strong influences in my life and served as my first teachers who, by example and instruction, taught me to love and treasure the Word. No doubt they taught me more Bible and theology than I learned from my hometown church.
After graduation from Palatka High School in Palatka, FL, my parents sent me to Bob Jones University in Greenville, SC where I studied for one and one-half years. In January of 1954, I transferred to Shelton College in Ringwood, NJ. (a Presbyterian college where Dr. James Oliver Buswell served as President).
Beverly Ruth Strube (my future bride) transferred from Houghton College at the same time. We were married our senior year in June, 1956. After graduation from Shelton College and almost immediately before I was to be drafted, I joined the U.S. Army in 1957. When my father passed away in 1958, I was discharged from the service and we moved to San Mateo, FL to be with my mom. It was there that we started our teaching careers.
In 1959, we moved back to Shelton College where we served as dorm parents and I taught high school in NJ for seven years. After obtaining my Master’s Degree, the opportunity came for me to apply at Cedarville College in Cedarville, OH where I taught for nearly 35 years and my wife for 25 years. In my first few years at Cedarville, I earned my doctorate at Ohio State University. It was during my long career at Cedarville that I had the opportunity not only to teach Christian young people, but speak in many different churches in Ohio and nearby states. We praise the Lord that He allowed us to minister in His vineyard at Cedarville.
After our lengthy tenure at Cedarville, we retired in 1996 and moved to Brevard, NC. Although I continued to teach part-time at Cedarville, we both became active at Cornerstone Presbyterian Church in Brevard, NC. I was elected to the Session and asked to serve as Chairman of the Missions Committee at CPC. Over the last few years, we both have been involved in missionary service. I have had the opportunity to teach pastors in Russia, Ukraine, Romania, and China. The pastors that I had the privilege of ministering with in these countries were all former students of mine and all held to a reformed soteriology.
I thank God for my Christian heritage, for Beverly who has been my faithful companion and helper for nearly fifty years, for our two daughters who have been infrequently a trial but most of the time a joy.
When I met one of my former students, Dr. Dan Steere, we talked about what had transpired in our lives; I was pleased and blessed to hear about his ministry. Dan introduced me to Rev. Don Mountan and after a ministry trip to Uganda with both of them, I felt the strong leading of the Lord to join them in training strategic Christian leaders.