January 7, 2018   JANE’S HEART TO HEART   …PASTOR’S HELP MATE

Stuart Hamblen:  October 20, 1908 to March 8, 1989 in Kellyville, Texas, the son of a traveling Methodist preacher, and founder of the Evangelical Methodist Church, Dr. J.H. Hamblen. Stuart’s career as a Country Western Gospel singer, composer, radio-movie personality, and master storyteller all began in 1926, where he became radio broadcasting’s first singing cowboy. His group changed, both in name and in personnel, and by 1931, and for 21 years thereafter, Stuart stayed on top of the popularity charts on the West Coast with his radio programs: “Covered Wagon Jubilee”; “Stuart Hamblen and His Lucky Stars”; and the “Cowboy Church of the Air”.

During that time, his motion picture credits included parts with Gene Autry; “The Arizona Kid” and “King of the Cowboys” with Roy Rogers; “with John Wayne.

During his long span on the radio, Stuart composed western songs… many of which are still being recorded today: . Later he wrote some of his greatest song classics: “It Is No Secret” – the original manuscript of which is buried in the cornerstone of one of the Copyright Buildings of the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., and which has been translated into over 50 languages around the world.

In 1949, Stuart and his wife Suzy attended a prayer meeting at the home of Henrietta Mears at a meeting of the Hollywood Christian Group, and on that night, a young man named Billy Graham was there to speak to the group. The two men hit it off right away, and Stuart asked Billy if he would like to come on his radio show to promote his tent crusade. Billy did show up at the radio station, and after the radio interview, Stuart urged his listeners to go down to the tent to hear more of Billy, and ended by stating “Make sure you all come, cause I’ll be there too!” Well, Suzy wasn’t going to let those words ring untrue. As Stuart started to settle in for the night, Suzy appeared, all ready to go out the door and said, “You ready to go? You told everyone that you were going to be there. You don’t want to disappoint your fans!” So, Stuart went night after night front row center, until he could take it no more, and conviction was hitting Stuart hard. Knowing that the tent crusade was scheduled to end in a couple of days, Stuart decided to escape; packed up his hound dogs, and headed out for a hunting trip.

In the early ’50’s, Stuart’s radio show was syndicated nationwide. Back then, the commercials were performed by the radio host during the show. The syndicate sponsors came to Stuart to let him know that the commercial he was to promote was for alcohol products. Stuart refused, due to the simple fact of his recent conversion to Christianity, (with Billy Graham), and his public renunciation of his alcoholic ways. He was not a man to go back on his word. The sponsors told him they would pull the plug on his show if he refused to do the commercial, and as a man of his word, he didn’t, and in the last several shows, Stuart used them to let his nationwide-listening audience know why he would be leaving the air.

Hearing this, in 1952, the Prohibition Party asked Stuart to run for the President of the United States on their ticket. Stuart was the type of man that if it was something new, it was surely an adventure! He had never done that before, and so he did! When the first returns came in he was actually ahead! When the final votes were counted, he had set a new record for votes for the Prohibition ticket, running 4th to Dwight Eisenhower (see Election Results).

Married to his wife, Suzy, for over 55 years,  Stuart Hamblen died on March 8, 1989.  His beloved wife Suzy, followed him on June 2, 2008 at the age of 101.

 

It Is No Secret

The chimes of time ring out the news

Another day is through

Someone slipped and fell

Was that someone you?

You may have longed for added strength

Your courage to renew

Do not be disheartened

For I have news for you

It is no secret what God can do

What He’s done for others, He’ll do for you

With arms wide open He’ll pardon you

It is no secret what God can do

There is no night; for in His light

You never walk alone

Always feel at home

Wherever you may go

There is no power can conquer you

While God is on your side

Take Him at His promise

Don’t run away and hide

It is no secret what God can do

What He’s done for others, He’ll do for you

With arms wide open He’ll pardon you

It is no secret what God can do

     

STUART HAMBLEN

Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.