Some people have strange ways of expressing themselves. Dr. Kenneth Hagin was one of those. One of his favorite expressions to demonstrate how some ministers show their ignorance was, “…like a donkey braying in a tin barn at midnight.” He would also tell us to, “Eat the Hay and spit out the Sticks.” Yet another, piece of wisdom was, “Poor Preach, Poor Pay.”
Being new to Tulsa, Oklahoma area, we wanted to find a church home. Initially, we visited the Sheridan Assemblies of God and liked it very much. It was the church that Rev. Hagin attended when he was not traveling for his seminars.
For the most part we made Sheridan our church home, enjoying the fellowship and the ministry there. Wednesday evenings before the service, potluck dinners were sponsored by the members, and it was a great way to get acquainted with the people.
We were curious though. Since we knew that we had lots of time to select a church, our decision was to visit several churches and see how they treated visitors. We dressed in the school code, which was suit and tie for the men and dresses or skirts and blouses for the ladies. At most of the churches, the people stared at us as if we were from a strange country.
Staring is a bit rude, but how were you treated on your last visit to a new church?
On another occasion, there was a tiny church that sounded interesting, so we decided to visit. Small children were playing out front as we approached. Suddenly as they saw us, they turned and ran inside, loudly shouting,
“Here comes a preacher.”
The minister of the church was a lady, who warmly welcomed us. She approached my husband and asked if he would be willing to preach next Sunday, and he affirmed that it would be his pleasure. That Sunday, we brought with us some other students and they sang specials, gave testimonies, and my husband preached a wonderful message.
What happened next was a surprise to all! The lady minister came to the pulpit and announced that this was the final service for this church and that the church was closing.
WOW! We had shut the church down! We hoped this was not a sign from the Lord!
The offering was not large, and the lady offered my husband a dollar, but he gently refused and told her that it was his gift to be able to preach for her.
Later when ever we heard Rev. Hagin say those words, “Poor Preach, Poor Pay,” we would be reminded of this little church and smile.