—Dad's Girlfriends & Grandmother's Mistakes!9/84DO 2145
1. It's the funniest thing, since I've been sick‚ night after night I've been dreaming about the George Washington Hotel in Washington, Pennsylvania! So I finally asked the Lord, "Well‚ Lord, what are You trying to show me?"—And some amazing things came to me that I never realised before! I began to see where my Mother had made her mistakes.
2. She kept trying to show a little tolerance of all the sweet little girls that tried to interest me, bless their little hearts. They all probably thought they weren't good enough for me—the problem was that I probably wasn't good enough for them. (Maria: Well, how did your Mother make her mistake?) Well, she kept fighting off all these little girls, & I can see now that if she had let me get married when I really needed to & wanted to, when even the Lehmans wanted me to, she never would have lost me to the Army. That was her own fault. If I'd even been married in those days it would have kept me out of the draft. At the time when I registered, just to be married you were set aside. It wasn't till later they even began to pick out married guys without children, & by that time I probably would have had one!
3. She'd have kept me better if she'd have let me have a girl, some sweet good little simple pianist like that sweet pretty Sheila, I think her name was. She was kind of a short little blonde like the one in the movie we just saw, only she was so much sweeter‚ & oh, she could play the piano! She was a pinch-hit pianist for the Lehmans. She had this gorgeous wavy blonde hair cascading down to her shoulders, & she had the most beautiful big cow eyes that would look up to me just like she worshipped me. She was so sweet & so in love with me, & even after I left she kept writing to me. And even till the time I came back the first time she was still single & waiting. If my Mother had let me have her then it would have solved so many problems.
4. I think one thing the future is going to be for is going back & seeing where we made our mistakes. Don't we learn that way? I wonder if my Mother ever thought about that? Well, if she ever did, I'm sure she wouldn't have wanted to admit it. (Maria: She was probably jealous, that's why she didn't want you to get married.) Yes, I wonder what kind of a shock it gave her—the Lord must have showed her that—when she lost me to the Army because she wouldn't give me one of those girls! She gave me to the vicious, anti-Christ, horrible, monstrous Army instead of some sweet nice precious little Spirit-filled Pentecostal girl who spoke in tongues & prayed so beautifully at the altar & played the piano so beautifully & that even the Lehmans recommended. (Maria: And it was the Army that nearly killed you!)—Yes. It would have been much better if I'd been with her.
THE STORY OF LARALEE & LOISLEE!
5. Well, then the Lord gave her one last chance—I think it was probably the Lehmans' idea. They figured that Mother was so damn particular that it would take super women to satisfy her, probably two of them at that, so they sent us up to the Kempers to meet the Kemper Twins. And there's again where she made her mistake. See, she was like Isaac, she chose her favourite (like he chose Esau—Gen.27), the big tall beautiful cultural soprano & marvellous pianist & all that, Laralee, & that twin wouldn't leave her Daddy. But the other one, Loislee, was really the most spiritual, prayed in tongues & was sweet & could play even better as far as I was concerned. She had a gorgeous contralto harmony voice that would have gone so well with my lead. But Mother would hardly even look at Loislee because she was cross–eyed or wall-eyed, I've forgotten exactly which, & she was a little ugly. She was a brunette with dark black hair‚ but it was gorgeous hair when she let it down, beautiful wavy glossy black hair cascading down long over her shoulders. (Maria: How old were you then?) 19.
6. (Techi comes in:) Hi‚ Sweetheart! I love you! (Maria: Are you ready to go to sleep yet? Grandpa's telling a little story about some of his old girlfriends.) About when I was in love with two girls. The one was blonde & beautiful like you‚ & smart like you‚ filled with the Spirit like you & could play the piano so beautifully & sing.
7. My Mother finally realised the time had come she was going to have to let me get married. I think she saw the Army coming, it was breathing down my neck. (Techi: What Army was breathing down your neck?) The U.S. Army, the worst army in the World! (Techi: What does that mean, "breathing down your neck"?) Getting too close. (Maria: Well, they weren't actually all out in a big army marching trying to get Grandpa, but they were sending him letters telling him he had to come & join them.)
8. So Laralee was the girl my Mother picked. They were twins! One girl's name was Laralee & the other one's name was Loislee. Laralee was the beautiful blonde singer & pianist, & Loislee was kind of homely, almost ugly, either cross–eyed or wall–eyed, but frankly, I thought she played better. She just didn't have the looks that my Mother wanted. Oh, that was important to my Mother to have a beautiful good-looking team, not some kind of peculiar–looking girl that looked a little retarded. (Techi: Like the other girl.)—Loislee. Laralee was the pretty one, Loislee was not so pretty. (Techi: I know, but she liked good ones.)—Yes. Well, they were both good, very good girls. They both loved the Lord, were filled with the Spirit, talked in tongues, sang, played the piano & wanted to serve the Lord. (Techi: But did you also like the other one?) Oh, I loved them both. If I could, I think I would have married them both then!
9. So my Mother asked Laralee's father if he would let me have Laralee & he said no! Her Father wouldn't let her marry me because he wanted her to go to college first. So my Mother asked her if she'd be willing to run away with us & get married, & she said no. Of course my Mother wouldn't ask Loislee. But then after all that happened I asked Loislee & she said, "Oh, I prayed, 'Let it be David!’" She was ready to go at the drop of a hat! (Techi: The other girl?) Yes‚ the one who wasn't so pretty.—But I thought she was sweeter, more spiritual, played the piano better & sang better. She had a nice deep contralto mellow harmony voice that would have gone beautifully with mine, we would have made a marvellous team. And she was willing to leave her father & marry me & go with us, but my Mother rejected her & wouldn't receive her—which nearly broke her heart & mine too.
10. I'm sure that Mrs. Kemper would have let either one of them go‚ but especially Loislee. She was always fighting for Loislee, because Loislee was the little ugly duckling, the homely one, the one who was not her father's favourite. Mrs. Kemper was a prophetess! (Maria: See, it doesn't matter if you're ugly or if you're pretty if you love the Lord & you're sweet & you're kind & you love other people.) And you really want to work for Jesus. (Maria: It doesn't really matter, it doesn't make any difference.) (Techi: Like that little thing that says you're not an ugly duckling if somebody loves you.) That's right! (Maria: And Grandpa liked the ugly duckling best!)
11. So after the meeting Mrs. Kemper took us down to their lodge on this lake, a beautiful place, so romantic. I think she kind of wanted to work something out. I think maybe she thought she might be able to work it out with their father too‚ but he was adamant. Finally she decided since Laralee was his favourite that maybe he would be a little more tolerant with Loislee. I'll never forget the time I went up there. It was cold there in West Virginia in the mountains by the lake, & we were all three sleeping in the same bedroom with Mrs. Kemper. It was a beautiful two-story sort of lakeside lodge made of logs, a log cabin. It had big skins & things stretched over the walls like a hunting lodge, like the homes that the early pioneer settlers built when they first moved into those mountains.
12. Mrs. Kemper was a great big huge red-headed Irish woman! Actually, she wasn't their mother, she was their foster mother, because their mother died when she had the twins & Mr. Kemper had raised them from the time they were babies. (Techi: She died before she had them?) No‚ right after she had them. (Techi: Right after she had them exactly in the hospital?) I don't remember, Honey, exactly‚ but she died in childbirth. (Techi: Why?) (Maria: Well, Honey‚ she just got sick & died.)
13. Their first mother was famous! She was French & an outstanding woman evangelist, famous all through that part of Pennsylvania & absolutely adored by the people, & Loislee was just like her mother. (Techi: The blonde-haired one?) No, the little brunette who wasn't as pretty was just like her famous evangelist mother who really loved the Lord & was on fire & preaching the Gospel. Mrs. Kemper had known their mother very well & loved her & admired her & knew she was really great, & she really knew that Loislee was going to be like her. She knew that she had the anointing of the Spirit & was going to be like her, & that Loislee was the one, she favoured Loislee. But Laralee was blonde & beautiful & looked more like her Daddy, & she was more like him too. She was his favourite & the one that he seemed to favour & she favoured him, & when she asked him if she could marry me he said no.
14. So in spite of all Mrs. Kemper's persuasion & everything, we got the word from headquarters, way up in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania from big high mucky-muck Daddy, that he wouldn't let Laralee marry me. It really didn't bother me a bit because I always liked Loislee better, because she was humbler & sweeter & I figured I could get along with her better.
15. So when we got up to bed that night, Mrs. Kemper had gotten the news, & she was almost jubilant! And of course Laralee was proud, she didn't want to be turned down‚ so she was weeping. But Loislee & Mrs. Kemper were just shouting & praising the Lord that I was going to get Loislee instead! So I laid hands off of Laralee, & Loislee & I began to walk around the lake together & go out boating together. (Techi: Loislee, the ugly duckling?) Yes, but she had a more beautiful spirit. She was beautiful, humble, Spirit-filled, sang beautifully, played beautifully & really loved me. And when we got that word she said, "Oh, I prayed, 'Let it be David!'" And she would have been so good with our team to play and sing. Mrs. Kemper had been backing Loislee all the time because she knew she was the best for me and the most spiritual, & although my Mother didn't appreciate her much, she was just happy like it was a victory.
16. So Loislee & I went paddling out one day in the middle of the lake. Do you know what a lake is? It's a big broad water, not too broad, you can see the other side, & we went paddling out in the lake & just let the boat drift while we sat on one little bench together with our arms around each other kind of loving up. I was kissing her & she was far more fiery that way than Laralee. Laralee was too proud & conservative, but Loislee was ready to kick over the traces & away we go! She was the best one. The other one was prettier, but prouder.
17. So when her Daddy said no, then my Mother asked Laralee, "Well, how about eloping? You can run away & marry David anyhow!" She said, "No, I couldn't do that to my Daddy." Well‚ that cured me right off the bat. I said, "Huh! She loves her Daddy more than me‚ forget it!"—And I don't think I ever touched her again! I just gave her the cold shoulder & wouldn't even give her a second look. When I found out that my Mother had even offered to go that far, asking her to defy her father & run away with me & she still wouldn't go, I said, "Huh! So she loves her father more than me?—Forget it!"—And Mrs. Kemper was real happy because she knew all the time Loislee was better for me. So she kind of let us have liberties & we went out in the boat & we were sitting there kissing.
18. And all of a sudden, here comes this big old grumpy, sour-faced sourpuss woman who sort of ran the lake & the camps & stuff, & we didn't even see her coming because we were so engrossed with our deep kissing! Loislee could kiss & make love & run rings around Laralee, because Laralee was so...what do you call it?—Inhibited! So Loislee was just practically going wild‚ she was ready to lie down in the bottom of the boat!—And I guess the owner of the boats, who'd been watching us through the binoculars, figured that's what she was about to do too the way she was acting.
19. So we didn't know what was happening until all of a sudden—bump!—Her boat bumped into ours & it jarred us awake & we looked over & there she was! She said, "All right‚ listen, you two! I keep a clean lake & I don't want no funny business here, you hear me?! Now you kids go home! You go back to your mother, Loislee!—And you go back to whoever, & don't you ever let me catch you guys doing this out here on the lake again or I'm not going to let you have my boats any more!" We were so astounded! We weren't doing anything wrong, we were just kissin' & lovin'! We weren't even having sex or goosing or fucking or anything‚ just kissin' & lovin'! (Maria: Some people don't like love.)
20. You know, I've been over all this territory in my mind, in my dreams lately‚ asking the Lord, "Where did I go wrong? Why did I ever wind up with Mother Eve‚ of all people?" Loislee would have absolutely adored me, licked my feet, worshipped me, done anything, recognised any spiritual talent. She loved my Mother—but of course it really hurt her because my Mother didn't love her. (Techi: The ugly duckling...) To help you remember it, Loislee was the lowly one. Loislee, lowly-Lee, she was the lowest Lee. Laralee was the highest Lee. Loislee was the lowest Lee, Laralee was the higher Lee!
21. Anyhow, we came back & the woman spouted off to Mrs. Kemper, & Mrs. Kemper said, "Oh, that old fuddy-duddy, she's always a pain in the neck" etc. She was really sick & disgusted with the grouchy lady because she saw we were really making the kind of progress that Mrs. Kemper wanted. (Techi: Did Mrs. Kemper like the ugly duckling?) Oh, Loislee was her favourite, because she knew what she had, her talent & her spirituality & how much she loved the Lord & how much she loved me.—But she didn't push herself forward, she just waited until I turned Laralee down, then she flipped! And then Mrs. Kemper thought, "Well, the door's wide open now!" (Techi: She was the lowest Lee!) She was willing to go right that minute at the drop of a hat, right from the cabin, & that's what Mrs. Kemper wanted us to do, because she knew if we ever ran into Mr. Kemper‚ that he wouldn't even let Loislee go. But she was willing to go & Mrs. Kemper would have been part of it & with her mother's consent we could have gotten away with it.
22. But my Mother refused because she didn't like the little humble lowly one, isn't that pitiful? (Techi: She liked the pretty one?) Yes, she liked the big pretty blonde one. (Techi: The snooty one.) Well, she wasn't altogether snooty, she was sweet, but she was a little proud & she was sort of spoiled & Daddy's favourite.
23. So Mrs. Kemper was trying to persuade my Mother that it was the Lord, it was the best thing, that Loislee was by all means the best for her work & my life & everything & fitted in well, even her voice. She was accustomed to always singing harmony because Laralee was the big high mucky-muck who always took the lead, & Loislee always had to sing the harmony. Loislee was never picked to sing solos, only Laralee, & even when they sang duets, Laralee stood by the piano while Loislee, lowly Lee, played the piano & just sang the backup. So Mrs. Kemper literally tried to persuade my Mother to take off with Loislee, & Loislee was ready & hot to go, & I was ready! Mrs. Kemper was on my side rootin' for us kids, but Mother objected.
24. I don't know if anything would have ever changed, I doubt it, but right in the middle of it all when all that was going on & Mrs. Kemper was trying to persuade my Mother to grab Loislee & run, here comes big high mucky-muck Daddy Kemper all the way down from Canonsburg, Pennsylvania clear down into the West Virginia woods! You know how come?—That nasty old lady had phoned him that his girl was making out with this boy right out in public in the middle of the lake! She said, "Your daughter and her friend are disgracing my lake and I'm not going to tolerate it and you'd better come down here and stop all this stuff!" You can imagine what kind of tale she told him! And he came storming down and that was the end of that!
25. Well thank God, Mrs. Kemper was bigger than he was, & besides, they had five more children & he needed her to take care of them. They were real sweet kids, wonderful kids. They all sang & everything & they ran a church in Canonsburg where we held a meeting. They were wonderful people. Mr. Kemper was a good man, Techi, don't misunderstand me, he was a real saint in some ways, but he just didn't quite see the Will of God. See, when you don't want to do what God wants you to do, when you resist His Will, then you can really make some big mistakes!—And I believe it was really God's Will!
26. So I've been going back over this wondering what happened, why did I get in so many messes, especially after that? I know that none of those girls I knew in Miami were really the best. Neither Dolores nor that other girl, none of them were spiritual enough or talented enough to really be part of the team, & that's why I gave'm up sacrificially. And of course almost anything would have tasted good after that. I was beginning to warm up to this pretty little girl in Washington that played the piano‚ I think her name was Sheila, but my Mother didn't like her. (Techi: Grandpa? Was it the one that you loved on the couch?) No‚ no, no, you're thinking about when I was only a little boy seven years old. That was my cousin. (Maria: Grandpa was about 19 now when this was taking place.)
27. So Mr. Kemper just exploded, but Mrs. Kemper really knew how to handle him & she kept him in check & just as good as told him, "Cool off! It wasn't like the owner of the boats said at all, it wasn't at all bad, they were just sittin' out there doin' a little spoonin'!" To her it wasn't bad at all, but he was even more conservative. He said, "You've disgraced us! Here I am the pastor of this great church, everybody knows me, & my own daughter out there! David, how could you do this to me?" He really worried about his reputation because this woman gave him this bad tale about us making out, as she said, "Before the whole World‚ publicly, in the middle of the lake!" (Maria: Probably nobody was watching you except her!) Yes, & she had to have a pair of binoculars!
28. (Techi: Was the snooty lady good?) No, she was a bad woman‚ obviously, because she was opposing the Will of God. (Techi: And so was the other guy.) Mr. Kemper, right. Even though he was a good guy & a preacher‚ he said he didn't want either one of his girls marrying anybody for the next five years. He said, "I want them to go to college for five years first. They're only 16! Let'm go to college first!" College‚ ha!
29. Oh my goodness‚ I never thought I'd ever get into all this, but I was dreaming about it last night & I was really trying to find out where did we go wrong, where did we make our mistake? How come I ever landed in the Army?—And really my relationship with my Mother went down from then on‚ & her ministry went down too. I think she really missed the Will of the Lord. It seemed that every decision she made from then on was the wrong one, including the one about Aimee & all that. (Techi: Which one?) (Maria: Honey, that's another whole big story, Grandpa's told that before.) (See No. 1719) And I even wound up marrying the wrong girl that she absolutely hated & that finally took me away from her entirely & almost took me away from the Lord & became the leader of the Division & all the rest—Mother Eve! (See No.716, "The Division!")
30. So I was really asking the Lord, "Where did I go wrong? Why did I ever marry Mother Eve? How come I ever landed in the Army? Those were such beautiful sweet times in Washington & Canonsburg & West Virginia. How come I didn't marry any of those sweet, dedicated, talented girls that could have first of all kept me out of the Army & could have made such a good team for the Lord & for my Mother, kept her in a better ministry?" Mother Eve couldn't even really play the piano, I just had to pray the Lord would sort of teach her & she really worked at it & tried.
31. So a lot of different girls fell in love with me, & it all happened around Washington & Wheeling & Canonsburg in the Tri-State area there of Pennsylvania, Ohio & West Virginia. (Techi: But did the blonde girl love you?) I'll tell you the story. She thought she loved me, but she didn't love me enough to leave her father & marry me! See? God's Word says, "For this cause shall a man leave his father & mother & cleave to his wife & they two shall be one flesh." (Gen.2:24) So you're supposed to be willing to leave your parents when you finally really want to get married. Of course‚ in our Family we don't have to, thank the Lord, we can all live together! Isn't that wonderful? In our Family we don't have to leave parents, at least not our good parents who are Family members. But anyhow, I'll tell you the end of the story!
32. Mrs. Kemper & Mr. Kemper went around & around & we could hear them fussing all night long upstairs while we were sleeping downstairs. She was trying to persuade him to let either one of the girls go, at least Loislee which she knew was not his favourite, but no, not Loislee either. He said, "She's got to go to college for five years before I ever let her marry. She doesn't know what she's getting into. I never had any education & I don't want my daughters to be ignoramuses & go out to be preachers' wives & pastors' wives & have no education & be dummies, I want those girls to go to college, five years of school first!" Huh! We didn't have time. Of course, nobody really knew then that we didn't have time, not much time. What time was it? It was just before the War, because it was after we left there & went to California that I was drafted.
33. So anyway, he flatly refused to let either one of them go, & although Loislee was willing to go without his permission & elope with me, run off with me, my Mother refused to take her! I was kind of amazed how well Laralee took it, she didn't cry much, really, it didn't seem to hurt her very much.—Which showed it didn't bother her that much. But Loislee, the lowly one, she wept & wept & wept, because I think she really felt in the Spirit the Lord was really not getting His way. That was even after I'd already registered for the draft. We were already writing letters to the Draft Board, sending them copies of my ordinations and all this kind of stuff to try to keep me out.
34. The Lehmans wanted me to marry somebody quick! Lehman was a smart guy‚ he said‚ "That's the only thing that'll save him because they won't recognise his ordination, nothing!"—Those [ACs] down there in Miami. He tried to persuade my Mother, "You have to get him married." Well, she hesitated, & while she hesitated I was lost! I think she thought if she ran far enough from Miami we could hide out‚ so we went clear to Los Angeles & started living with my Dad, but they found us. Apparently they especially hated my Mother. I didn't realise it was so much a part of that animosity from the old times right then. They were determined to hurt her by getting me. And I had to keep the law & keep reporting‚ or at least I thought I did‚ sometimes I wish I hadn't! So from then on it was just touch & go.
35. I got out there & Mrs. Linger then tried to beg my Mother to let Corinne marry me. And you know, it must have been the Lord, because we were up in Los Angeles & I had this dream about Corinne—& it's the only time I ever dreamt it, much less ever did it—where I actually made love to her. And it was so great, I woke up & thought, "Well, she's not so bad after all! After all‚ her mother is rich & they've got lots of money, that would solve a lot of our problems!" So I persuaded Mother to go down there & visit them again. I said, "Let's go down & see the Lingers."
36. I was all gung ho & about ready to ask Corinne to marry me, & I think she sensed what I was driving at & she said, "You know, I'm engaged to the Baptist preacher here now."—We didn't even know she had a boyfriend! (Techi: The ugly duckling?) No, Corinne was another girl, she was even uglier! (Techi: But was she still a sweet girl?) Yes‚ she really loved the Lord & could really play & sing.—Not only that, she was rich! Her mother had lots of money & apartment houses & hotels & stores & all kinds of things. (Techi: But did Loislee look like this, cross-eyed?) Don't do that, Honey, you don't want your eyes to get stuck like that!
37. So Laralee went to her Daddy, & Loislee was broken-hearted & just went to the Lord & her Mommy, & she tried to comfort her & we left. We went to California & the next thing you knew, I think it was that same year, December 7th, 1941, the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor & the U.S. declared War & they started drafting the guys as fast as they could. I got a notice from my draft board that I was already being declared delinquent, & if I didn't show up pretty soon they were going to put me in jail! So we went there & my Mother was still trying to get me off, this time on a disability & talking about my heart & blah blah blah.
38. She muffed every chance the Lord had given her, every one, through her own selfishness & her own unwillingness to let go, her own stubborn will & her own choice of girls that she thought would be best for me instead of what the Lord wanted. And everything between my Mother & with our ministry seemed to absolutely go haywire from then on.
39. (Techi: But what happened to Loislee?) Well, their Daddy sent both girls off to Asbury College, what was supposed to be a good big Christian Bible College, the same place Mother Eve went‚ a real narrow-minded, snooty, religious school where they didn't even believe in touching each other. You can't believe that‚ can you? (Techi: Just touching each other like this?) You had to stay six inches apart. (Maria: The men & the women couldn't touch each other.) They had to keep the six–inch rule. So the girls went to college to please their father. Loislee didn't want to, but my Mother wouldn't have her so she had no choice. She finally married a fellow who said he was going to be a missionary, but instead wound up being nothing but a little one-horse pastor, a hick or somebody like that from up in the hills.
40. Mr. Kemper thought that sending his daughters to college was going to get some really big important men to marry them off to. He wouldn't even let dear Laralee get my mail, he would take the mail & send it back to me, but she ended up running off from school anyway & eloped with some other guy that her father didn't even like & he didn't approve of. (Techi: Was he a good guy?) No, he was not a very good guy & he was kind of a rotter & she finally had to divorce him. (Techi: What's divorce?) Just think, our children don't even know what divorce is, thank the Lord! That means when two people get married & then they don't like each other & they split up. (Techi: But that was a good reason to divorce.) Well, her father thought so, anyhow. They had two children. He split'm up and the last I heard she remarried again, somebody that wasn't even in the Lord's work.
41. Then when I was beginning to lead the Family, Techi, we came back to Gibsonia, Pennsylvania where their father had moved & had this big college now & was head of this big work there. He had a big college & he was a big shot‚ a big important man now. Laralee had married twice & neither one of them turned out any good. Loislee did marry a guy who served the Lord, but he wasn't very important. So we left the Club & started on the road with all those hippies & Kemper invited us to come to his town. He was practically the guy who ran the town, he had this big college & everything, & he invited us to come there & we had meetings etc.
42. And when we were saying goodbye he said‚ "You know, Dave, I realise now I made a terrible mistake by not letting one of them marry you. I realise I made a terrible mistake that day. College education was not nearly as important as the man they married. I realise now that things would have been much better." So he realised he'd made a mistake & he was sorry‚ but it was too late. I think my Mother even realised it afterward that she should have at least taken Loislee because it would have kept me out of the Army & things would have been better. But she made her mistakes, & I guess the Lord allowed it to teach us all some lessons.
43. So that's the story of Laralee & Loislee, the Kemper twins. (Techi: At least you found other System girlfriends. But was Loislee gone?) They were both gone to college & married & everything. When I got out of the Army, which was just a few months later, I went back to try to see the girls & talk to their Dad to try to persuade him. I think Mrs. Kemper invited me to come over & have dinner, she was real sweet, but he was still hard. I said, "Where are the girls?" He said‚ "Oh, they're up in school, in college," blah blah.
"MAN LOOKETH ON THE OUTWARD APPEARANCE!"
44. So I gave up & went back to California, & there I fell in love with girl after girl & none of them pleased my Mama, she wouldn't let me marry any of them. (Techi: None of them liked your Mother?) Oh, they all liked my Mother & she liked'm, but my Mother was very very particular & a little bit selfish & a little bit jealous & she just didn't seem to think there was anybody in the World good enough for me. (Techi: But Loislee was!) I know Loislee was, but my Mother didn't think so. She would have taken Laralee.
45. (Techi: She thought that Loislee was not pretty because men look at the outward appearance.) Exactly right! That's a good verse for this. (1Sam.16:7) Just like the Bible says, say that verse again: "Man looks..." (Techi is silent.) Come on‚ Honey, don't be shy about this. You're preaching! You're witnessing for the Lord! You don't have to get out & witness on the street corner but you can at least witness on a tape & that would be a witness to the whole World. It's like man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks on the heart. So by my Mother being proud & a little selfish & looking on the outward appearance, we missed the boat. (Techi: But did your Mother ever say she was sorry?) I don't think she ever admitted she made a mistake about that, because there was girl after girl after that who I wanted to marry & she still didn't let me marry. (Techi: I told you it was like man looketh on the outward appearance.) But God looks on the heart.
46. Well, I think the Lord would have settled for a lot of those other girls, so do you know what the Lord did to my Mother? Because she put a stop to so many of my love affairs & turned down so many girls & made so many mistakes about me & made me lose getting married so many times to good girls who would have been a real help & blessing, the Lord finally let me marry a girl that my Mother just hated & despised & couldn't stand to live with & just really was not the right girl for me at all, Mother Eve! (Techi: But was she a sweet girl?) Yes, she was a sweet girl. She was the mother of Faithy & Ho & Aaron & Deborah, & look at what Deborah's done to her! (Techi: Oh yes, Mother Eve.) Yes, & she's caused lots of trouble. She caused lots of trouble then, & it seemed like she never did anything but cause trouble. (Techi: I never knew that your Mother was still around when you married Mother Eve.) Oh yes she was, she was very much around. I love you, Sweetheart! This is one little girl they'll never take away from me, thank the Lord! TYJ! Amen. XXXXXXX! (Techi: Because none of those bad people are around today except the [ACs], but they'll never get us.) No, thank the Lord.
47. If this sickness wasn't good for anything else, maybe it's good to go back & relive some of those things. So now you see I'm learning things & now my Mother is having to learn some things & reap the shame of it even Up There. She covered it up for years, but now I know, & I don't think she ever said she was sorry. I think she always blamed it all on Mr. Kemper, she never blamed it on herself for not accepting Loislee. But then she wouldn't accept any girl after that, nobody. There was one girl after the other, wonderful pianists & singers & sweet Pentecostal girls that loved the Lord & were filled with the Spirit, & one of the best ones was Evelyn Gapen. She was real sweet, pretty & rather delicate.
48. I realise now that my Mother didn't always have my best interests at heart‚ she was most of the time thinking about herself & what good it would do her. (Techi: You know what? You know the story about the two girls that Grandpa just told? It's like God looketh on the inward appearance‚ but men looketh on the outward. Your Mother was just looking at her like she was ugly‚ she liked the pretty one. But still the lower Lee was more spiritual.) That's right! Really, I thought she was beautiful‚ but my Mother didn't like her looks. She said‚ "She looks a little strange and some people are going to think she's retarded." (Techi: But how did she look?) She was just a little bit cross-eyed. Her eyes sort of wandered around, they didn't always focus. See, she'd always been the underdog so it made her the sweetest.
49. Oh Techi, it's after 12! You've got to get to bed! We hugged & we kissed‚ now you've got to go! Lord bless & keep her & give her sleep, in Jesus' name, amen. (Maria: Honey, losing sleep when you're sick is not good for you.) It's not good at all!—Because the only time you're healed is while you're sleeping. As soon as you go to sleep your body goes to work trying to heal up all the breaches in the walls, the holes in the dykes & the torn-down places & the places that need fixing. As soon as you go to sleep the Lord can start sending His repairmen to try to fix you. But if you don't go to sleep He can't do it!
ENGAGED TO EVELYN!
50. So Evelyn Gapen was such a sweet girl. There were several in between, but Mother always nixed every one of them. But finally I met Evelyn Gapen, she was the daughter of these real sweet Italians who had this little Pentecostal Church up in Pittsburg‚ California—just a small little church, but it was a very live active one. We went up there & held a meeting & she fell in love with me & I fell in love with her.—Of course, I was falling in love with any girl that came along! I was getting desperate. But she was real sweet, Spirit-filled, talked in tongues & was real wonderful at the altar. She could just walk all over the piano, she was just a marvellous pianist! And she was a sweet little singer, nothing outstanding, but my Mother's objection to her was that she was a weakling. (Techi: Lower Lee was?) No‚ this is Evelyn. Her mother was beautiful, a gorgeous pianist, & her father was a simple little sort of a grape farmer. The mother was really the preacher & the pastor & the pianist & everything, so she'd gotten her talent from her.
51. Do you want to hear all this? This is my Mother's last mistake. Boy oh boy, how I see that now though! The Lord offered so many alternatives, but this is the last one she turned down, & after this one she got Mother Eve. I think the Lord was fed up trying to find me a wife that pleased my Mother, & none of them pleased her.
52. Dear Evelyn was sweet as she could be, but she wasn't real husky or strong so my Mother said she could never stand married life. "No no, she'd be a semi-invalid like I was, she just can't, no no no, she can't take to the road. We can't have her coming along because she'll be having babies & she won't be strong enough to take care of them & I'll have to take care of them" & blah blah blah! "Besides," my Mother said, "she's just the daughter of an old grape farmer." I think she was kind of jealous of her mother too. She claimed she didn't come from a very good line. She was always wanting me to marry somebody rich & important or somebody with a really outstanding talent or something. After all, my Mother was somebody so I must be somebody, & she thought I ought to marry somebody who's really somebody!
53. But Evelyn & I fell in love! We held several meetings up there in the Oakland area & we went around a lot together, to Golden Gate & Golden Gate Park, & we were really really doing well together. And she wasn't all that much of a little dumb bunny either! We didn't find this out until later, that her older sister had married Westmont's Director of Music, John Hubbard, a very important big high mucky-muck, head of the Music Department of Westmont College. She was an outstanding pianist & piano teacher, & her younger sister Evelyn was following in her footsteps, really an outstanding pianist. I think her sister kind of liked me because I was a lot like her husband—tall, skinny, ethereal, sang spiritually—& she was buggin' for Evelyn to marry me, & so was her husband. They were matchmaking as much as they could to try to push it, but the more people pushed it, the more stubborn my Mother got! She would just stiffen if anybody pushed, even a matchmaker. She'd say, "All these matchmakers always try to push it!"
54. John Hubbard was the head of the music department at Westmont College & his younger brother's name was David Hubbard. They were sons of two old-time Pentecostal pastors that my Mother knew in Oakland, pastors of a real old Pentecostal center called Elam Tabernacle. It's funny how these names are coming back to me, thank the Lord. So they came from real good spiritual parentage. David wasn't even married yet, but he was all for it. I'm so sorry, Honey, but I've just got to finish it, you know me. This is the end of the story, I could have told you a lot in between, all the girls to whom my Mother said no. Oh Mother, you did make some mistakes! I can see now that what happened wasn't all my fault!
55. So they were pushing it & trying to keep us together & get us together‚ took us on dates & shoved us off in little covered boats on the lake‚ nice little honeymoon-type situations‚ & we did appreciate'm & we loved up. I never did anything but just kiss & hug & be affectionate. I just hardly ever would have thought of doing anything else, I was even afraid to touch their titties! Sometimes I didn't mind if I sort of accidentally pressed against them, & I sure hugged them a lot & kissed the girls a lot with a lot of deep kissing. I'm sure any one of them would have been happy to go as far as I wanted to go‚ but I was really proud & resistant & always wanted to do what my Mama told me to do. (Maria: You just thought it was wrong.) Yes‚ I thought if you were really holy & spiritual you didn't do those things. I thought I was even pushing a little bit by hugging & kissing.
56. So we were really getting thick until the time came that I was serious enough & I said, "I'm going to ask her parents if I can marry her!" Well, my Mother sort of hardened up, tightened up, & she'd always say, "Well, David, you can do whatever you want, but..." I said, "Well, this time, this is the girl!" So I went & asked her folks one night after church. Of course‚ Evelyn & I talked it over first & she said she was thrilled, & she went into ecstasies, & I told her folks & they went into ecstasies, they were all so happy! But my Mother‚ you should have seen her! She was glowering around like an old battle axe, really making it pretty evident she wasn't pleased. And they were sort of hurt & couldn't understand why she was so opposed to it. I'll never forget all the way home after I proposed she did nothing but talk to me all 500 miles about why Evelyn Gapen wouldn't make a good wife & why we couldn't marry her. It was a matter of "us" marrying her as far as my Mother was concerned, my Mother & I marrying her, & all the reasons why I could not do it.
57. She finally said, "Well, if you insist, all right‚ we'll have her down for a visit & get to know her better & you'll see." I think my Mother figured that would really queer it, because she was a little frail & she had to sleep late. She was not used to doing much hard work such as cooking & breakfast & all that sort of thing. So she came down for—a funny thing—I think it was a nine-day visit, & my Mother immediately started dragging her out of bed early in the morning, putting her in the kitchen to get breakfast, doing everything she possibly could to make the poor girl look at a bad advantage, & I think even to try to make her hope she wouldn't have to live with this horrible mother-in-law.
58. Evelyn & I were living in a dream world & I was taking her all over to see everything! I took her to see Clifton's Cafeterias & we went to see "Fantasia" the first time it came out, took walks through the parks & all kinds of things, & she was a sweet, beautiful little girl. She was rather frail. She was a beautiful pianist & really sweet. The folks let me have the car to take her around, I guess they didn't want too much trouble, & one night we came home & sat up late on the parking lot of the house, our own little private parking lot, spoonin' & kissin' & lovin' & getting into it pretty heavy.
59. It was only 10 or 11 o'clock, but my Father came up & said, "Son, do you have any idea what time it is? That poor girl is not very strong & she needs to get to bed. Now you all wind it up & get out of there & come on down!"—And he stood right there & waited for us to get out of the car. Afterwards I could hear him & Mother talking, the walls were kind of thin, & they said, "If we don't get that girl out of here he's going to get her pregnant & then we're really in trouble!" So they put her on a bus the next morning & shipped her out! My Father said, "One more night like that & we're going to all be in trouble!"
60. When they stuck her on the bus & shot her back up to her folks, I was so angry! Here we were, I had asked for her hand‚ we were officially engaged right in front of her parents & the church & all & enjoying a little pre–marital getting acquainted, & all of a sudden they snatch her right out of my arms & stick her on a bus all by herself to go clear back up 500 miles alone on the bus! Her parents were even shocked because she came almost without notice.—And I was furious! When I found out what they'd done I threatened to catch the next bus after her. I think they did it while I was sleeping in the morning‚ because they realised they'd get some trouble out of me. They spirited her off & got her off on the bus before I could stop'm, & I was so furious I nearly caught the next bus! But by this time I was flat broke, I didn't have any money, so I very seriously considered getting out on the highway & hitchhiking up there. I wrote her a letter that I was going to come anyhow even if I had to hitchhike.
61. But then I got to thinking, "Well, who am I? What am I? That'll be a great way to land up there, a flat broke hitchhiker! What kind of a husband is that to look forward to?" I think even yet I missed the boat then by being a little too proud, that was my own fault. I missed the boat, because she would've been a real sweet wife, real gentle, tender & patient‚ just the opposite from Mother Eve. So it was partly my fault too, but it was mostly Mom & Dad's fault. But I didn't follow up. I could've really gotten desperate & I almost did it. I nearly went out on the highway & started hiking‚ but I had no money, nothing‚ & I think they were purposely keeping me broke to make sure!
62. So that's when I really got desperate & prayed, "Lord, help me to find somebody!"—And I think it was the next Sunday that I discovered Mother Eve. I think she was part of my punishment & especially my Mother's. She was real strong & she could play the piano a little. (Techi: What did you do wrong?) I didn't go ahead & hitchhike up to Northern California & marry this sweet little Italian girl that my Mother didn't like, Evelyn Gapen. I should've gone ahead & walked all the way if I had to. I failed her.
63. Then my Mother right away whisked me off to some meetings somewhere. I think she grabbed Corinne real quick as a move of desperation. (Techi: Who was Corinne?) Corinne Linger was a little funny rich girl. (Techi: The one that went off in the bus?) No‚ that was Evelyn Gapen, she was real sweet & pretty & wonderful, & I really loved her, but I guess I didn't love her enough. (Techi: Your Mother really loved her?) No, I did! My Mother didn't like her. I mean, one girl after the other my Mother didn't want her. (Techi: Did she hate her?) No, she didn't hate her, she just didn't think she was strong enough & blah blah.
MOTHER EVE—GRANDMOTHER REAPS WHAT SHE SOWED!
64. So then the Lord really socked it to my Mother & gave her a woman for my wife with whom she just fought tooth-&-toenail from the first word go, from the first time Eve ever came close! They just hated each other & fought & fought for the first five years. (Techi: That's when you were with Mommy, remember?) Not this Mommy! No, this Mommy, Maria‚ came much later. (Techi: But it was still when you had Mother Eve.) That's right. (Techi: Remember, you were sleeping up with Mother Eve on the top & you could almost reach Mommy down there.) (Maria: Grandpa was sleeping on the bottom with Mother Eve.) That was a long time later. (Techi: And Mother Eve was quite difficult.) Yes, that's true. Well, first my Mother was the one that was difficult, but she sure paid for it! (Techi: I thought she was sweet.) My Mother was sweet, except when it came to things she didn't like, & she was jealous of every woman I ever looked at. (Techi: I think Mommy's the sweetest of all!) Of course Mommy's the sweetest of all! Yes, Mommy's the best of all, there's nobody better than Mommy. (Techi: And there's nobody better than Daddy.) Oh, thank you, Honey!
65. Anyhow, my Mother really reaped it, whew! She really reaped it. (Techi: If Mommy was around when your Mother was around, would she have liked her?) (Maria: See, she was jealous of any other woman that came along.) Any girl. (Techi: But she was just his Mother, not his girlfriend.) I know, but she didn't want me to love anybody but her. She wanted to be the only one. And I've been realising lately since I've been sick & dreaming, going back over all these things, how wrong she was & how many times she missed it because she was so jealous of me. It's funny, some of these things never came to me before. Of course in her opinion, just like our 10:36ers, they think they know what's best. After all, they're only trying to help you & do what's in your best interests & do what's best for you—so they think!
66. (Techi: But what did the little cute girl do when she was shot off on the bus?) She was just broken-hearted. They said she would sit & play the piano at her house all day long & just cry & cry & cry. When I phoned up & asked how she was, her Mama said‚ "Well, she just sits there all day & plays the piano & cries. She's got this whole big stack of tissues there on the piano from wiping her eyes & her nose. She's just broken–hearted. I don't know if she's going to live through it. It's just making her sick." Isn't that sad?
67. My Mother took me right quick someplace where I couldn't even think about it any more, got me right into a meeting or something right away. (Techi: But did your Mother like that little girl?) She sort of liked her, but not enough for me to marry her. (Techi: Maybe it was just that she liked her & loved her‚ but maybe she wasn't strong enough.) That was her excuse anyhow. I think mostly it was because she was just jealous. (Techi: Did your mother shoot her off on the bus‚ or did some other people?)—My Mother & Father.
68. So that's the end of that sad tale of all the mistakes my Mother & I made. (Techi: But what happened to your Mother after all those mistakes?) I worked with her in the Lord's work & was her song leader & singer & we went all over the country preaching the Gospel. Well, see, next week I met Mother Eve & from then on I was determined to marry her, & my Mother didn't like her. (Techi: What day was it that they shot her off on the bus?) I think it was the middle of the week, Thursday, something like that, because I remember it was the next Sunday I met Mother Eve.
69. I got desperate & said, "Lord, I've got to have a wife & I've got to have one quick & I want one now!" (Techi: But did you not like Mother Eve?) Oh well yes, I liked her a lot, but she wasn't real pretty & I didn't like her personality & I didn't like her ways & her dirtiness & a lot of other things, but she really loved the Lord. (Techi: Was she ugly inside?) Well‚ later on I found out she was pretty ugly inside too. (Techi: But before when you just got her.) Well, she was quite sweet sometimes & she loved the Lord & she liked me & her relatives all liked me.
70. (Techi: I think Loislee was sweeter much longer than Mother Eve!) Oh yes, Loislee would have been Heaven compared to Mother Eve! She would have absolutely waited on me hand-&-foot, & she was tough & strong too, let me tell you, she cooked & kept house. The twins had kept house for their father all his life after his wife died, as soon as they got to be big enough. (Techi: Whose wife died?) Mr. Kemper. Remember his wife died? The mother of the twins died when they were born, then he married another woman, the second Mrs. Kemper. (Techi: Mrs. Kemper was much sweeter than Mr. Kemper.) Yes she was, but we'd better not go backwards in the story‚ it's hard enough to finish it. (Techi: But Grandpa, he was sweet, but when it comes to taking away his daughters to marry them before they get to college, then I think he got bad about that.) That's right. You really got it right. Well‚ let me finish the story anyhow.
71. I was determined & I went ahead & married Mother Eve even though my Mother didn't want me to. In fact, I ran away & married her, Mary Keaston helped us. (Techi: Does "determined" mean you really want to?) Yes. I'd made up my mind I was going to do it whether anybody liked it or not, that's determined.—Stubborn, determined! (Techi: But that's a good reason.) Yes, that's a pretty good one. So we ran away & got married & shocked everybody & came home. I didn't dare go back to my house because my Mother was furious, so we went back to Mary Keaston's & stayed there about two weeks. Finally I think she got pretty fed up with us & said, "Well, it's time for you guys to do whatever you're going to do, go home."
72. So I took Mother Eve back to my house where my Mother lived, & my Mother really put her through the mill!—Put her up to housekeeping & cooking & all the things Eve didn't like & couldn't do right off the bat just to show me. And when Eve wasn't looking she'd call me in the kitchen & say, "Look what a dirty housekeeper she is! Look, how horrible! Look at this room, she can't even sweep the floor! Look, look!" She was constantly pointing out all the bad things. I think she was still trying to break us up even though we were married. And I just finally got so sick & fed up with it that I was trying to figure out some way to get away from my Mother. And I think maybe she sensed it & decided the thing to do, she was going to show me one way or another that Eve was not the gal. So we went out & held this meeting, she wanted to show me that Eve wasn't fit for evangelistic work.
73. (Techi: What happened to your Mother & Mother Eve?) Well, for five years they fought like cats & dogs. (Techi: I know‚ but after you were gone with Mommy.) This Mommy? That's a long time later. First of all Mother Eve & I started having lots of kids & babies & my Mother didn't like that. So when we were about to have the third baby she fired me. (Techi: Which was the third baby?)—Ho. We'd already had Deborah, she liked Deborah, & Aaron, she didn't like him because he was a kind of a strange little boy. And then we were about to have Ho & that's the one that made her decide to kick me out. And yet later Ho was the one she fell in love with the most & loved the most & helped her take care of my Father. The very baby she didn't want & fired me because of became her dearest friend later. (Techi: What happened to Mother Eve?) Oh, she wants to know the whole story! I don't know if I can tell you the whole story, I'll just tell you this real quick.
74. We travelled with my Mother till we had two children & she kicked me out & I had to go to college on the GI Bill. Then I had to go find a church & I built a little church in Arizona & they kicked me out. Then I went back to college, & from college I went back to Los Angeles & taught school & drove a school bus for three years. Then by this time we had four children & my Mother was beginning to like the kids a lot. Mother Eve had taught'm to really memorise Scripture & witness & sing & my Mother finally saw the great opportunity of a singing children's team, that they would be a real attraction in the work. So she decided to re-hire us & invited us to go on meetings with her again, which we did for a little while.
75. Then we went to Miami & I was determined to start the Soul Clinic School, even though my Mother hated Fred Jordan & everything he stood for, independence from the church & all the rest. (Techi: Who was Fred Jordan?) He was the man that I worked for for many years, Honey, a good man of God who loved Jesus & preached the Gospel & taught me so much of what I know about witnessing & missionary work & the Lord's work. So I worked for him for many years. (Techi: Doing what?) I booked his television show on hundreds of stations. (Techi: Were they good television shows?) Oh, they were beautiful! Beautiful!—Lots of beautiful music & good Gospel messages, really good.
MOTHER EVE'S PERMANENT!—THE LAST STRAW!
76. By this time we left my Mother far behind & it was too late. (Techi: And where did Mother Eve come?) We were living together & working together. We started the school in Miami & she kept the schools going while I was on the road for television. Finally my Mother sort of won over Mother Eve & they got to be pretty much alike, & then I was really standing alone fighting the battle. (Techi: So did you kick Mother Eve out?) No, no, no, no, no. We worked together as long as I could stand her, as long as she'd obey me. But in the last year my Mother invited us to come out to California to help the hippies, remember that story?—So we came out & we worked with Grandmother trying to help the hippies, & Eve got worse & worse, she did everything I told her not to.
77. I'll never forget the straw that broke the camel's back! The final thing was when I absolutely forbade her to go to the beauty parlour & get a permanent & she deliberately went right ahead & did it anyhow. I just blew up! I told her off & I said, "That's it, I'm finished! You're a disobedient wife! You're bad & do everything wrong!" (Techi: You asked her to do what?) I told her not to go to the beauty parlour & get a permanent. A permanent is when they stick irons in your hair & bake your hair until it's crisp, burn it until it looks like a waffle iron, but some women think that's pretty.
78. I begged her to let her hair down like the girls & the hippies we were working with, & she had beautiful hair, but she was just determined to go get a permanent. That was against everything the hippies were standing for & doing‚ & she looked so out of place then, like a typical Systemite! It was pitiful. So I practically disowned her right then & there & I started looking for somebody else right then! I prayed the Lord would send me another wife, a good wife‚ & I told the Lord what kind of wife I wanted. (Techi: And so no one would kick her out.)
79. Well, I never kicked Mother Eve out for that matter‚ she just left me! She just took up & ran off. (Techi: I know, but Mommy the good wife won!) Mommy won, that's right! She thought for awhile she was going to be able to run Mommy off, but finally the Lord ran her off. (Techi: With what?)—With Mommy! He used Mommy. Mommy didn't do a thing to her, Mommy put up with her & was sweet & kind & patient & tolerant with her & tried to be a good girl‚ but Mother Eve was just furious! I was afraid she was gonna try to beat Mommy up! So I finally told her off & she left. (Techi: What does "told her off" mean?)—Scolded her. I said, "Now that's enough out of you, you shut up & don't talk like that about my new wife any more! She's here to stay & we're married & that's that & if you don't like it, you can leave!" How's that? Is that good?
80. I told Mother Eve‚ "This one is here to stay!"—And that was almost 20 years ago‚ think of that‚ & she's still here! And Mother Eve is long gone. (Techi: Where did she go?) I don't know. We don't even hear from her but once a month, & I'm expecting almost any month to hear that maybe she's gone. (Techi: I think she was gone the day you kicked her out.) She was gone that day, that's for sure, but I didn't kick her out, she left! (Maria: She just decided to go because she didn't want to share.) She didn't want to share with your Mommy. Your Mommy wasn't even asking very much. (Techi: Even when Mommy was sweet & kind?) Yes, she still didn't like Mommy, because she was a mean old lady, that's why. (Techi: That's ridiculous when someone's sweet & kind.) That's right. Mommy was willing to put up with her. Okay, Honey, I'm so sorry. I know that's too much, but I just can't resist answering her questions.
81. So Mama Eve left & Mama stayed & here we are—end of story! TYJ! And I never asked my Mommy anything about this one, period! By that time I was my own boss. (Techi: By that time you kicked her out‚ remember?—Left her far far away.) I never kicked out my Mother or my first wife, Honey, they left me. They left me far behind. And by the time I married your Mother, the Lord was my Boss! No woman was bossing me around any more. (Techi: But Mommy never leaves you.) Never! She won't even let me out of her sight! (Techi: Never ever!) She hangs right on for dear life!
82. So when I started pleasing the Lord & obeying the Lord instead of all these women, especially my Mother & Mother Eve, when I was determined now to serve the Lord, then the Lord started blessing me & sent me Mama! (Sings:) "I was determined, I'd made up my mind, to serve the Lord!"
THE WASHINGTON HOTEL!
(Next morning at breakfast:)
83. You're going to get a new Letter from last night—maybe we ought to call it "The Washington Hotel!" Dear little Techi got so interested that I had to sort of go into the details & elaborate. She kept asking me questions about this girl & that girl & trying to get them straight. "Was it Loislee or Laralee?" I said, "Well, maybe you can help remember it this way: Loislee was the lower Lee, & Laralee was the upper Lee!" She said, "Okay, it was Lowerly, huh?" So I had to tell the whole story about the Kemper Twins. I don't think we ever put that whole story in print, so you'll get it now.
84. I so idolised my Mother, she was like God to me & I couldn't believe she could make a mistake, but I began to realise that she could during the last days when I should have gotten married. Just think if I'd married some nice sweet girl instead of Mother Eve! I'd have probably had my family ten years sooner & would have been able to start the Revolution ten years sooner. Of course it might not have worked out like that‚ but it would have sure saved me a lot of agony!
85. But that was when the dear matriarch had to really fight hard to keep fighting them off. So many girls wanted to marry me & I wanted to marry them, & my Mother just turned them down right & left, one after the other! She could be very convincing like a typical Systemite 10:36er: "I'm only doing it for your good, Son, it's for your own interests. I want to make sure you get the right girl for what you have to do." I mean, how could she ever pick me the right girl for what I had to do? She thought she knew what I was going to do. What she wanted me to do‚ of course‚ was keep on working with her & get some big flashy showy pianist & beautiful big buxom blonde singer to show up good on stage, & it just didn't work out that way anyhow. She said‚ "I'm really doing this all for your best interests, Son. It hurts me as much as it does you, but we have to wait for the right one." All that kind of reasoning.
86. I just fell in love with girl after girl‚ & they were all wonderful girls—sweet, Spirit-filled‚ spiritual, played the piano beautifully, better than Mother Eve ever played, sang & everything. Every one of them was a marvel!—But my Mother said no. And I worshipped Mother so that I didn't realise that she was really being selfish. Maybe she had herself convinced that she was being unselfish & it wasn't because of her, that she just wanted me to wait, but I realise now she was just plain damn jealous!—Just jealous & selfish. Well‚ in a way I guess you can't blame her. After my Dad left I was all she had, & without me she couldn't keep up her work.
87. But I realised she really was being selfish & jealous. She just tore me apart, one after the other. She couldn't completely prevent me from all contacts with girls. After all, we went to churches & there were oodles of pretty girls looking for a man. And of course here I came, a supposedly handsome singer, a good boy—of which there aren't too many like that around—loved the Lord & in the Lord's service. So she couldn't really keep them away, it was like fighting the flies away from the honey. Isn't that funny?—Me being the honey sort of. Every church we went to, every town we went to, some gal flipped & fell in love with me, & I always felt sorry for'm & promised to write'm. I wrote some of those gals for years & I got nearly every single one of them in the Lord's service or on the mission field. (Peter: It's like you FFed'm!) Yes, I did, that's really what it was.
88. But I asked the Lord‚ "Why do I keep dreaming about the Washington Hotel?" That's where we usually stayed. See, my Mother & I never worked together very much in Florida, & you've read about how little we did in California because it was glutted with preachers & evangelists wanting to hold meetings & glad to get one-night stands, anything, just to be in California or Florida. But because of the Lehmans & their wonderful radio ministry, we really hit the big time in the East! They really had a wonderful radio ministry. They were on a powerful 50,000-watt station, WWVA, Wheeling, West Virginia, & they also had studios in Pittsburgh & Washington, Pennsylvania, & Steubenville, Ohio, what they called the Tri-State area there. It's where the Western end of Pennsylvania meets Ohio, & then a funny little sliver of West Virginia comes right up between'm with Wheeling right on the tip. Pennsylvania & Ohio both produced coal & steel & had all these big steel mills in both Pittsburgh, Wheeling & other towns. So they were really thickly populated.
89. I've forgotten how many millions they claimed that Lehman was reaching every time he went on the air, an audience of something like five million people at least! He was one of the pioneers of the Gospel radio ministry, so that he really had a wonderful ministry. So to get an invitation from him to be on the radio with him was really hitting the big time in the East, just about the biggest thing there was in the East in the way of Gospel. It also made you famous because it went out & covered those three States & you just got flooded with invitations to meetings then, which is the life's blood of an evangelist. You hit the bigtime showtime & then you got lots of bookings from that.
90. We went up there from Florida almost every single summer. He wanted us to come up in the Wintertime, in fact he wanted us to move up there & have Mother work with him full time, & she probably would have been better off if she had. But she wouldn't part from her dwindling pitiful work in Florida which the Lord had pretty well cursed by this time.
91. But anyhow, it was a tremendous blessed relief from Florida to work where you knew the Gospel was really appreciated, with old-fashioned folks, Pennsylvania farmers & Ohio farmers who were probably the biggest audience because they lived out in the country & there was no entertainment to speak of, all they did was listen to radio. Therefore we worked in that area & we always had to be near the radio station or studio somewhere for several years.
92. The Army finally settled it in '41. I was 23 & I'd been driving Mother since I was 16, about seven or eight years I worked with my Mother, & most of that was in that area. We made a few forays out to California, hither, thither & yon‚ & we never got really far into the hard East, as we used to call it. And you know the story of our not cracking the bigtime in California because of Mother's refusal to go to Aimee's, which was one of the biggest mistakes she ever made. But thank God she went to Lehmans, & we went there year after year.
93. So I got to know that area so well, it was more home to me than Florida! After I started driving my Mother when I was 16‚ it got to be more home than any place on Earth. We not only broadcast with the Lehmans‚ we also broadcast with another radio preacher, Jack Munyon. He was called the Pittsburgh radio evangelist & monopolised this area in Pittsburgh, while Lehman monopolised Wheeling, & they both had big audiences. But Jack's station wasn't as powerful, it was only 10‚000 watts. Lehman was a smart cookie, he was really a good promoter. You have to know how to finance & back that kind of thing, & he did. He was on this big 50,000–watt station in Wheeling. So we shuttled back & forth between the two of'm, sometimes working for Jack, sometimes for Lehman, kind of a rivalry between'm.
94. It was beautiful beautiful country, especially in the Summertime. There was Pittsburgh, & then about 50 or 60 miles further South was Washington, Pennsylvania, which was just over the hill from Wheeling. Wheeling was on the bottom of the shuttle‚ Pittsburgh on the top, then Washington was a nice little quiet old colonial town right in the middle‚ non-industrial, just had been an old sort of a farming center.
95. I'm just trying to explain why you're going to get a funny story about all my girlfriends! We worked around there for so many years & knew the people so well & held meetings in all the little towns, that I had an awful lot of girlfriends in that area. Of course‚ I was always very proper & never did anything I shouldn't. I usually just gave them a little peck on the cheek or the forehead.
96. A number of them were very good candidates for our teamwork too, because they were excellent pianists. Jack Munyon had pianists & Lehman had pianists, & they had to be top notch stuff, because they had the top notch religious music shows on the air. Their pianists had to be able to just do anything, play anything, any time, anywhere, any key, just walk all over the piano! So that's the kind of pianists they were & they were usually awfully sweet little girls, some of them Pentecostal & filled with the Spirit, a wonderful place for me to find a wife!
97. But my Mother would sit down with me afterwards & explain to me each time why this girl or that girl was not a good one, she just nixed'm one after the other! And finally if I'd gotten in pretty deep I'd have to tell the poor girls, "Sorry, but my Mother doesn't think we should"—& they'd weep. I don't think they ever cared too much for my Mother after that, of course.
98. But with the war coming I think my Mother finally saw, in fact Lehman warned her, "If you don't get that guy married they're not going to pay any attention to these ordinations he's got"—two or three ordinations. That bunch of God-damned [ACs] in Miami were out to get my Mother & to hurt her in any way they could, & they knew the worst way they could hurt her was to get me! So they just absolutely ignored the ordinations or the fact I was in fulltime service for the Lord. They didn't know what an evangelist was, or if they did, they hated'm. They said, "He's not working with any recognised church or denomination, so we don't recognise such organisations!"
99. So Lehman was smart, he begged my Mother to let me get married‚ so I think she finally saw it was going to have to be. My Mother just didn't seem to think she could find anybody good enough for me, so he really arranged this meeting with the Kempers. He said, "Well, I know two girls that are really tops! They've got it, they've got everything! They play the piano terrifically‚ sing, they're spiritual & they'd make a terrific member of your team‚ either one of them."
100. The reason I'm telling you all this is because I've been dreaming about this town every night, & that was one of the inspirations for my little breakfast table this morning, to be able to sit here & look out at the view. It was called the George Washington Hotel & he had actually stayed there in his day. (Peter: Wow!) Well, Honey‚ remember that back then in my day, 50 years ago, that wasn't too far from George Washington's day! '76 to '86, about 150 years before. Maybe some of you remember being in Virginia & seeing signs on those old inns: "George Washington slept here!" The U.S. is such a young country it's almost ridiculous for it to think it can run the World! It's like the little baby of the family deciding to take over & show the family how to run itself!—And that's why they're making such a mess of it. Europe could have done a better job.
101. Well, I was asking the Lord, "Why should I keep dreaming about that?"—And the Lord began to show me. I guess the Lord wants me to know these things before I have to see Mother‚ otherwise I'd be kind of unprepared for the shock, to realise how she undercut me & how selfish & jealous she was all those years & why I went without a wife for so long. I was so love-starved & sex-hungry for so long because she just shooed them away. Just as fast as they came along she could knock'm off!—And that wasn't too easy to do since I was ready & the girls were ready, & now I'm beginning to see the Lord was ready too!
102. If I had married one of those very sweet girls in those days, what would have happened—which is probably what the Lord wanted to happen—would have happened sooner! I would have gotten broken loose from my Mother anywhere from five to ten years earlier, learned to be on my own & raised a family. She used to say‚ "Oh, we can't! It won't be any time until we'll have a bunch of squalling brawling brats around & nothing but babies, & what are we going to do with a bunch of babies in this kind of work?" Well, in a way she was right, in that kind of show business. What actors carry around a troupe of babies & nurses? Well, we've turned it into an asset! I determined that God must give children for a reason, not to be liabilities like my Mother insisted, but that the children could be our greatest asset, & they have become our greatest asset!—Gained us entr to people & hearts & opportunities & everything more than anything!
103. Well, years later my Mother began to see that & that she had missed the boat.—Not only in not letting me get married & have those little brawlin' squalling brats around that she sometimes called'm, but that they could have been an asset to her ministry. In fact, the one that she fired me for, the third one, Ho‚ became one of her greatest friends & took care of my Dad when he was sick & was the one she loved the most of all. The Lord really must have been rubbing it in on that one!
104. It wasn't until after she saw our kids in action on our own, what things we were doing, standing & reciting Scriptures & singing songs & everything, that she began to realise with her own good show business sense that here was a real act that would really go over & attract attention & was worth hanging onto! So she fired me on the news that the third one was coming, but after the fourth one came & they had gotten to where they were really putting on a good act, she wanted us back again. That was pretty much too late, of course, but we worked a little bit with her. But if I had married one of those wonderful girls, we might have had the Revolution ten years sooner!—And I'd have gotten grown up & separated from my Mother & had my family & learned all the things I needed to learn sooner.
105. Well anyhow‚ I didn't mean to tell you all that, but I'm just trying to explain to you why I keep dreaming about that town! That town was the center of this whole operation & we loved it there because it was quiet & we'd often go there between meetings. Even the Lehmans finally moved there & had their studio there etc., because it was a lot nicer place to live than dirty Pittsburgh or dirty Wheeling. It was sort of an overgrown country town, I can't remember it having any kind of industry of any kind.
106. It had this old inn that Washington had stayed in. Of course, they had kind of rebuilt it & modernised it until it was really a first class hotel, at least for that small town. It wasn't all run down or shabby, but it was old. I loved those old high ceilings like the grand old hotels from the grand old days, you know? It was only about two or three stories high on Main Street, but in the back I think it was maybe three or four stories high because everything was built on a hill in those areas. It had a lovely garden out back & you could sit along the back of the hotel on the 2nd or 3rd floor in the old-fashioned dining room & see out in the garden.
107. I used to love to eat breakfast there & I always had oatmeal & toast like I'm having this morning. I hadn't gotten around to eggs & bacon yet. I kind of got in that habit with my Mother & Dad. They just ate two meals a day so they had to have a substantial meal for brunch. My Dad really meant business about breakfast! They had ham & eggs & potatoes & fruit & coffee & all kinds of stuff around 11 o'clock & it kept'm going for the rest of the day, then they usually had dinner about six or seven. When we got up in the morning we usually had a glass of orange juice, or they had their coffee or something, & that kept us going till 11.
108. The Lord's really shown me some things through this illness that I never dreamed I was going to dream about! I was lying in bed dreaming about this too, how we were going to eat breakfast like this. We've got this lovely view & we're not enjoying it!
109. (But we did!—And I got well again, TTL!—And we started getting out all the Posters there—a terrific new ministry, thanks to the Lord & our wonderful artists! GB'M!—And YOU! PTL!)