Friday, April 13, 2012

Life on Second-Row-Piano-Side, Chapter 3: Life Before the Second Row, Piano Side

Life on the Second-Row-Piano-Side began long before there was a second row or a piano.
Ironically, it all began at a youth revival, the summer of 1947, at a little country church in Johnson County, GA.  The little church was called "Happy Holler" because it was said that when people got happy in church, they hollered.  Mama who was quite a story teller said, "One Sunday when I was very young, a lady with high heeled shoes went to the altar.  She got saved, shouted, jumped up, and landed on a plank with a knot in it.  When her high heel hit the knot, the plank broke.  The sound of the break scared the children half to death."  I personally think the shouting probably scared the children half to death.

Daddy said, "I started going to church because I had my eyes on the prettiest girl in Johnson County.  I spotted her picking violets behind the church and I said, 'One day I'm gonna marry that girl'."
My granddaddy allowed Mama to see Daddy only at church or youth activities. Daddy said he heard his girl in the "prayer room" calling his name and asking Jesus to save him.  At the youth revival of 1947, Emory Lindsey was saved at an old fashioned "mourners bench."  A few days later he was picking cotton, when he felt the call to ministry on his life.  Daddy said, "I stood that hoe up in the ground and went inside and told my mama that God had called me to preach and I was going to college."  Mama said, "We ain't got no money.  How do you think you are gonna do that?"  Daddy would tell us his story, "I was just a poor ol' backwoods country boy, but God saw something else and called me to preach.

Daddy graduated from high school when he was only 16 and left for college at 17.  He left with a borrowed suitcase and one suit of clothes in one hand and his thumb out with his other hand.  He hitch-hiked to Nashville Tennessee and enrolled in Trevecca Nazarene College.  He was so homesick and missed his girl but he knew she would be waiting for him.  Since Daddy couldn't afford a meal ticket, he ate peanut butter and crackers and pork and beans from a can.  His first job was digging a 12ft ditch.  He tells the story, "The hole was so deep that I would dig and throw the dirt over my shoulders."  When his supervisor saw how determined he was to make it, he promoted Daddy to the job of night watchman.  He was given a 22 pistol.  Daddy recalled, "You had to be 18 years old to carry a gun.  They didn't ask and I didn't tell." 

After graduaton from high school, Mama went to work at the factory where they made shirts.  She started out making 40 cents an hour and brought home $35 a week.  She sent Daddy $15 a week so that he could buy a meal ticket.  He never ate pork and beans again in his entire life.

Life on the Second-Row-Piano-Side was about to begin.




  1. Bonnie, you have such wonderful stories about your family. My sister and I sat our Dad down many years ago with a tape recorder and a list of questions. Whenever we asked a question, we would all start laughing so we never got any of the stories recorded or answered..Happy Weekend..Judy

  2. How cute! That's a precious memory! Thanks, Judy for reading and sharing my story. It's been hard, but therapeutic for me. I'm glad that God makes beauty from ashes. But there will be joy and laughter along the way too. Thanks for your precious comments.


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