"Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of truth." — (Psalm 60:4)
"Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them." — (Isaiah 13:2)
Devoted To The Defense Of The Church Against All Errors And Innovations
Vol.III No.XI Pg.7
June 1941

Dealing In Personalities

Cled E. Wallace

Some people think it is a mistake, even wicked, to ever deal in personalities, but there are some things of a personal nature I want to talk about and I'm going to call names. So gird yourself for the worst and get that thrill that comes occasionally through utter disappointment. I hope that the shock of a let-down will not be too much for you. If after reading this, you still insist on having the worst, you may write my friend Brother Frank L. Cox of the Firm Foundation and he will order you a hundred copies of "the April 15th number" of a certain paper from "Dear Junior." If that number is exhausted any other date will serve as well, if not better. If the demand for it has exceeded the supply ahead of you, you can get the lowdown on us by reading what M. C. Franklin and John O'Dowd says about us in the Firm Foundation. But I recommend that you stick to the Banner and get a higher type of journalism than that.

I am at this writing in a meeting in Mission, Texas in the Rio Grande Valley. Whoever named it "The Magic Valley" had something real to justify his enthusiasm. It is a garden of delight with its widespread citrus fruit orchards and fertile fields that produce corn, cotton and vegetables of many varieties. It really defies description. Its magic is not spontaneous. It is the result of intelligent planning, hard labor and thrifty attention to details. Nature is generous in rewarding the diligent but grudging in what she hands out to the slothful.

There are a number of faithful churches and preachers carrying on the work of the Lord throughout this section. The Bible Banner enjoys a wide circulation down here and the assurances of support and endorsement we are receiving is highly encouraging and greatly appreciated.

The church at Mission has a neat meeting house in the heart of the city near the business district. Brother W. R. (Billy) Wolfrum lives here and preaches and teaches the Bible. He may not be "My Most Unforgettable Character" but he comes in the unforgettable class. I met him a good many years ago and have not forgotten him yet. I did the preaching in some meetings at Wellington, Texas a long time ago when he lived there and preached for the church. He has a record everywhere for honesty, upright living and constructive work in the church. He is now in the middle age bracket and has a spot on the top of his head that reminds me of a drowned out place in a hay field. At that he is not hard to look at when you get used to him. He and his faithful wife came down here not very many years ago. It is my impression that he came down for much the same reason that sons of Jacob went into Egypt. The depression sent him in search of provender. Whatever happens to Billy, he is not apt to starve if there is anything to eat any place he can get to. He hung paper, painted and preached and got hold of every honest dollar he could in any honest way he could. He had rather starve than get hold of a dollar any other way. He is blessed and prosperous, owns his home, is clear of debt and occupies an influential and substantial place in both the church and the community. Since I have been here I have heard somebody call him "Scattergood" and it struck me as more apt than humorous. I have never heard of him' scattering anything that wasn't good. The general affection in which he is held delights me. Of course he will never cause any trouble in the church for he attends to his own business and otherwise lives right.

Now this is liable to make some other preachers want to come down to the Valley and do what Bill has done. As well as I am getting along, I developed an itching sensation that caused me to ask him some questions. I found out that a man can succeed down here as well as he has, if he has as much of the same kind of sense Bill has and will back it up by working fourteen hours a day. I've decided to stick to preaching so I won't have to work so hard. Some come down here with money and fail, while others come with their toes showing and succeed. It all depends on that immeasurable something Bill carries under his sparsely protected dome.

Bill and his wife have suffered one heart-breaking reverse. They came to the Valley with two lovely children, a girl and a boy. Last year sudden death snatched the boy from them and angels carried him to the hills of God. He was a bright, manly lad of ten. Faith in God and the hope of eternal life cushioned the shock and the broken family carries on with inspiring courage. It is good to be close to such people. It rekindles vital fires that threaten to burn low. Of course I am enjoying this meeting. Three have been baptized and we are looking for others. Flashes of healthy reaction come from the brethren as they listen to the sweet old story.

I had a pleasant surprise yesterday. My father, Foy E. Wallace, Sr., and Batsell Baxter drove down from Corpus Christi to see me. My father lives there and preaches for a congregation, while Brother Baxter was in a meeting there. My father had a birthday June 2nd. He is seventy years old and has been preaching for more than fifty years. He is still vigorous and has as much to be thankful for as anybody I know. There are eleven of us children all living, five girls and six boys. Four of the boys are preachers and two of the sons-in-law are faithful preachers. He has quit counting his grand-children, we are a prolific set, but he has three great-grand-children. There has never been a divorce in the family, a fact that he mentions occasionally with some pride. He told me confidentially that he did not believe everything he read about me and Foy even in the Firm Foundation. I am the oldest child in the family and a grandfather myself. Foy is the fourth child. We are only distantly related as there are two girls between us. A lot of people think Foy is older than I am. Well, he's not, or as smart either. However, I do not argue that point but hold it as a private opinion. Sometime ago a dear old soul argued with me that Foy was the oldest child. She used to live next door to the family and knew. I never did convince her and finally gave it up.

Brother Baxter, Batsell to me, and I have been friends since we were in the 'teen age. He is a little older than I am, although I'm not trying to start an argument. He is a teacher of Bible in Harding College and is somewhat of a specialist on premillennialism. He knows the theory and the answer to it. He is proud of the fact that he has only one premillennialist in his Bible classes at Harding and he is a digressive. That one exception should not be held against him for if a compound dose of premillennialism and digression under one skull does not add up to an incurable case, I can't think of anything just now that would. Anyhow, I have a lot of confidence in Batsell Baxter. He is saddened and somewhat lonely. Sister Faye, his wife and a marvelous woman, went where Christ is a few months ago. I knew them both before they were married and have since often enjoyed the hospitality of their home. Such memories draw people close together. Brother Baxter assured me that we had his hearty support in the work we are doing in the Bible Banner and would sign his name to it if we ever needed it. And he would do just that. If the proposition to "deny us all recognition" ever comes to a vote, somebody is going to get the surprise of their lives.