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Billy Lawrence



I was born near Mena, Ark., April 14, 1932. I had a very sweet experience of grace at an early age. I cried and begged my parents to let me be baptized. Finally at age five my parents agreed so long as I understood that as I grew up my friends would be doing things that I couldn’t do as a church member. In 1949, when I was 17, I had a very radical call to the ministry. At first, I did not know what was wrong. I thought I was going to die. I had met a dear brother that year, Elder H.H. Goodman from Ashland, Alabama.

We attended an Association meeting that weekend and returned to his home Sunday night. Monday morning, standing under some giant pecan trees, Brother Goodman began to read me like a book. He said, “Brother Lawrence, you are in trouble, bad trouble. The Lord has called you to preach his everlasting gospel, and you are sure in your own mind that He could not be all wise and all knowing and do a thing like that. But you need to acknowledge that call and promise God that you will not fight it. This is not to say that at age 17 you will become a full-fledged preacher. You need to go home, finish your last year of school, and just do what you are called upon to do, and in God’s own time He will bring you into the ministry.” He then told me the heart rending story of how he, when a young man, became so twisted and bent that his hands almost touched the ground when he walked. His wife was given up to die; they were in their mid-twenties, with two or three children, in debt and no way to work. He told me that he suddenly realized this was all because of his disobedience. He yielded to that call and within two or three weeks he waswalking as straight as any man, his wife soon well and strong, and from that day forward everything he looked at prospered.

I was very convinced and finished my school to join the Navy during the Korean conflict. During those five years I preached only once in a while when I was at church, I was away so much in the Navy. I was convinced that if I ever married, it would be to someone of like faith. I met her near Washington, D.C. about a year after enlistment. We were married in March 1955. After being discharged, I began preaching often. In 1957, when I was 25, I was ordained by my home church, Ebenezer, Kirby, Ark. I was called immediately to pastor at Alpine, Arkansas. A few years later I was burdened to start a church in Little Rock Ark. We did that around 1962 and enjoyed 11 blessed years there. During that time, I baptized all five of my children. Bethel still has a special place in our hearts.

I was called to Brentwood Hills Primitive Baptist in 1973 and served several years, and then pastored several other churches in Texas.

larry heldman  

Elder James Compton (1905 - 2007)
Elder James Compton was the original founder of the 'Gospel of Grace Tape Supply.' His collection of tapes began as he traveled to Church meetings and Associations recording sermons on Reel to Reel. He has maintained this library of sermons faithfully over the years and are now the foundation of PB Sermons. org. This web site is dedicated to Elder James Compton (1905 - 2007)