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Sam Houston's Baptized Pocketbook

On the wall of Lyndon Johnson’s White House office there hung a framed letter, written more than a century earlier by General Sam Houston to Johnson’s great-grandfather Baines.  The letter was valuable for Houston’s autograph alone, but the story behind it is much more significant.  Mr. Baines is the man who led Sam Houston to commit his life to Jesus Christ.  After this life-changing event, the General was a changed man: no longer coarse and belligerent, but peaceful and content.  The day came for Sam Houston to be baptized – an incredible event in the eyes of those who had known him in his wilder days.  After the baptism, Sam announced that he would like to pay half the local minister’s annual salary.  When someone asked him why, his simple response was, “My pocketbook was baptized too.”

– Adapted from a story told by Randy C. Alcorn, Money, Possessions and Eternity, (Wheaton: Tyndale, 1989).