After the passing of Jack Exum Sr., John Dobbs encouraged some of us to express our gratitude to preachers and others that influenced us in our faith. I think it’s a great idea. I could probably post nothing but tributes the rest of this year, pointing out all of the people who helped me grow in faith over the years. But I’ll limit myself to a few of the people who truly impacted me. And hopefully inspire others to share their stories.
I have to start with Tommy King. Tommy is now the preaching minister at the Johnson Street Church of Christ in San Angelo, Texas. He served as youth minister for that congregation back when I was in middle school and high school. He came when I was in 7th grade (the beginning of Jr. High at that time) and transitioned to a different role when I was a junior in high school. For five years he was a role model, a friend and a teacher.
Frankly, when I began studying at Abilene Christian University, as much as anything I wanted to be Tommy King. That is, I wanted to be a youth minister at a large church in Texas. Tommy taught me to dig into the word. He taught me how to deal with other people, especially those who needed to receive more than they could give. I prepared for Bible Bowls with Tommy, climbed mountains, and even faced a natural disaster when a flood killed 8 people at the doorstep of our summer camp. I saw him go through the pain of divorce, struggle with raising two young boys on his own, yet continue to minister and give to others.
Tommy has been in ministry for about 30 years now. He has blessed hundreds if not thousands of people. I’m proud to call him a mentor and a friend.
Others have been passing the torch. Read some of their tributes:
Why don’t you share the story of someone who touched you?