Book Reviews: Remembering Two Baptist Pioneer Preachers of Texas

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Remembering Two Baptist Pioneer Preachers of Texas
By Sidney F. Alford (Dennis Bros. Printers, Lubbock)

Lovers of Texas Baptist history will enjoy Remembering Two Pioneer Preachers of Texas, Petersburg

resident Sidney F. Alford’s detailed account of the ministries of Isaac Reed and his grandson of the same name.

The elder Reed, born in South Carolina a month before the signing of the Declaration of Independence, ministered in western Tennessee 25 years before moving to Texas. One of the first Protestant ministers in the Republic, he founded the Old North Church near Nacogdoches in 1838, believed to be the oldest Baptist church in the state. He preached from 1834 to 1848.

The younger Reed, who preached in Texas from 1860 to 1908, mostly pastored in Hico and Dublin and was active in starting churches, helping organize several associations—including Leon River, Brazos River, Bosque River, Honey Grove and Erath County—and encouraging mission and Sunday school endeavors.

Known as “The Old Irishman” and armed with a six-shooter for protection, he rode a horse around the country to do his preaching, and often during church services, his gun and Bible were laid side by side. He died in 1908 and is buried in the Old Dublin Cemetery. The book is well-illustrated and contains considerable genealogy.

Danny Andrews
Wayland Baptist University, Plainview

Called To Love: Stories of Compassion, Faith and God’s Grace
By Kaye Miller (New Hope, 2009)

Grown-up missionary kid Kaye Willis Miller draws from her childhood experiences in Thailand and her adult years at Baylor and in Arkansas to pen the powerfully touching Called To Love: Stories of Compassion, Faith and God’s Grace. Through story, Scripture, and word pictures, the nurse challenges every Christian to love as Christ loved.

A skilled storyteller, Kaye manages on one page to make the reader burst into laughter at the thought of a pet water buffalo in a nativity play. Then on another, she evokes tears for a 2-year-old AIDS orphan with no one to rock him as he dies.

The three sections of the book—Offer It Up, Take It In  and Live It Out—urge response to God’s call to touch “the world that comes to our doorsteps every day.”  Miller obviously takes that call seriously as she gives practical advice born from her life.

Called To Love could have been a one-sitting book, but I chose to soak in each of the 12 chapters as a daily devotional. Suggestions in the appendix also make the title suitable for Bible study or life groups. However one chooses to use the publication, the pages will inspire and challenge the reader to view the world with “love eyes.”
Kathy Robinson Hillman, former president
Woman’s Missionary Union of Texas, Waco

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