Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Joe Bill Houston



Our dear friend Bro. Joe Bill Houston passed away Sunday and leaves behind a large grieving family, a home church that cherished him and a great multitude of friends all over the USA. He was 91 years old. Joe Bill was a Godly man, a preacher's friend, a tremendous singer, a great song writer, a hard worker and generous giver.

Those of you that know Bro. Joe Bill Houston know that the church lost a great soldier Sunday. Those of you that never met Joe Bill or heard him pray or sing have been cheated on a great part of life. Bro. Joe Bill was one of a kind and made a big impression where ever he went.

Bro. Joe Bill is part of our earliest memories of Dryden Rd. Church when we visited there in the mid 1980's. He was one of the first to welcome us with a big smile, a hearty GOD BLESS YOU and a few pieces of candy. We were strangers and his love took us in.

A few years after Dryden Rd. became home for us I made my first road trip with Bro. Joe Bill. I picked him up on a Monday evening to drive 800 miles to Allentown March Meeting in Semmes, Alabama. We loaded every thing in back of my Chevy Sprint but he wanted the large brown grocery sack in the front floor board between his feet. "You got to keep the driver well fed" he said, and well fed I was. It seemed like he had two tons of groceries in that bag. From cookies and pies to colby cheese, bologna, sweet potatoes, grapes, nuts, bananas and much more, he had it all.

He introduced me to Allentown that trip and in doing so introduced us to a whole world of friendships that we still enjoy today. We ate fried chicken, pies and cakes, seafood and my first gumbo! We sang, shouted and said Amen to the preaching until we were about to hoarse to talk on the way home. We duplicated that trip with my girls along several more times in addition to other trips to various campmeetings. It was a continuation of the tremendous influence Bro. Joe Bill Houston had on our lives.

He had a heart full of love and he lived to share everything he had with every one that would allow him to. He loved me and my girls as much as we have ever been loved and it changed our lives for the better. He affected us not only temporally but for eternity. He loved God passionately and talked to him as a man would his friend and that made God very real to us.

Bro. Joe Bill wrote the song "Fix It Man" that his son Evangelist Bill Houston sings and that we often sing as well. Bro. Joe Bill has blessed thousands of people with that one song. It ministers to people every time we sing it but nobody could sing it like Joe Bill did. I guess he danced in the Spirit every time I ever heard him sing it and it never got old.

Bro. Joe Bill was also famous for taking up offerings at campmeetings and praying over meals. He would often ask God to help the "stingy guts" when praying over the offering. I am sure he brought conviction to more than a few "stingy guts" through the yeas. His prayers over meals were as legendary as his healthy appetite.

Here is a picture of Bro. Joe Bill praying over lunch at the end of a morning service at Dryden Rd. Indoor Fellowship Meeting in 2012.



Odie was sitting in front of him when he prayed over the meal at Indoor in 2014. She recorded part of the prayer on her phone and I am glad she did. She made a video of the prayer by putting the audio with a picture of Bro. Joe Bill the same year and most likely the same day. You may have to view it on your computer as it may not play on a mobile device for some reason.

video

Here are a few more pictures of Bro. Joe Bill through the years.

2014




2012



2007







We miss you already, my dear friend. See you soon!

Bro. Joe Bill Houston's viewing will be at Dryden Rd. Pentecostal Church at 3201 Dryden Rd. Dayton, Ohio on Thursday night April 16th from 5-8 and the funeral will be at the church on Friday the 17th at 12:00 PM. 

Davy

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for writing this tribute to my Great Uncle Joe Bill Houston! This morning (as is with most days) I was foolishly consumed with thoughts of how to fix my families problems and in the mist of thoughts the Holy Spirit, So gently, brought Uncle Joe Bills song, "The Fix it Man" to my remembrance in my spirit. The Lord reminded me that our Lord God is The Fix it Man. And to leave their problems at the feet of Jesus.
    I didn't have the privilege of spending much time with Uncle Joe Bill in his later years but as a child I was always mesmerized by his love and devotion to God. By his examples...I was given an hunger to have the relationship he had with the Father. Again, I thank you for the beautiful tribute and am so thankful for you having the privilege of knowing him.
    Great Uncle Joe Bill was my grandmother, Beatrice Houston Mefford' brother. I am Debbie, daughter of Mildred Lee MeffordCampbell which is the daughter of Grandma Beatrice.
    Praise God for the men, women and children whom which He has brought to Him by Great Uncle Joe's (and many other Houston's) testimony of Him! May God Richly Bless You and Yours! Love and prayers from Debbie in Leeds, Alabama.

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