On Sunday, 31 March 1985, sister Barbara (Bobby) C. Adams departed from this life, after suffering from cancer. Sister Adams was the beloved wife of our brother and fellow soldier, Connie Adams who is a well-known gospel preacher and editor of Searching the Scriptures, the largest subscription journal among faithful brethren.
Sister Adams was born 16 August 193 1; she died at the age of 53 years. She met brother Connie Adams while attending Florida College. They were married for thirty-five years. To this union, two sons were born. Their older son, Wilson Adams, preaches for the Wildercroft congregation in Riverdale, MD. Their younger son Martin is also a faithful Christian with a respected family. The influence of this godly mother over her children is seen in the kind of fives which her children lead.
Funeral services were conducted at 1:00 p.m. on April 2 in the building of the Expressway Church of Christ in Louisville, KY. The Adams’ had received a large host of friends the preceding day at the funeral home; the building was full on the day of the services. I counted brethren from Kentucky, Indiana, Tennessee, West Virginia, Georgia, Ohio, Florida, and Texas at the funeral; no doubt there were brethren from other states whom I missed. Their attendance speaks highly of the influence of brother and sister Adams and how much they are respected.
The congregation was led in singing “Standing On The Promises,” “Jesus, Savior, Pilot Me,” and “Encamped Along The Hills Of Light” (also known as “Faith Is The Victory!”). Brother Weldon Warnock of Xenia, Ohio, a close personal friend, former classmate, and respected gospel preacher, eulogized sister Adams in his opening remarks. Then he quoted extensively from an article sister Adams had written entitled “The Blessings Of A Preacher’s Wife” (published originally 22 March 1973 in Truth Magazine and reprinted in March 1978 in Searching The Scriptures). The article demonstrated the fine spirit of this godly woman. Among the things which sister Adams wrote were the following:
A preacher is not always as well paid as some in this life. He does not have many fringe benefits which workers in plants or offices have. Few churches pay social security, health insurance premiums, or pension plans. Yet, I do not know of many churches that will deny a preacher an extra day off at a holiday season or fail to continue his salary during a long, drawn-out illness. Though your daughter may not always have the “most” in this life, you can rest assured that there are fringe benefits which few others will ever have.
What am I talking about? For one thing: friends. Yes, our friends . . . from Maine to California; Washington to Florida; in Canada, Norway and the Philippines. We would not trade these acquaintances for any amount of money on earth. These are people with whom we have worked through the years and who now have scattered around the country and the world. They include preachers, and yes, their wives. They include sons and daughters of preachers who have grown up and married in the past few years. Whole congregations are included. These are all brothers and sisters in Christ, and all of them are (or should be) striving toward the same goal – an eternal home in heaven. These friends are the finest people on earth.
(Few people realize the commitment of faith which a preacher’s wife makes in following her husband in his work as a gospel preacher. They endure the same sufferings as he does in every battle which is fought; they experience the loneliness of being separated from their loved ones and friends. As the years pass, I have developed more respect for these godly women, including my own wife, who have stood by and encouraged their husbands in the work of the Lord.)
Brother Warnock fought back his emotions on several occasions in describing sister Adams and her faith in God our Savior.
Following brother Warnock’s prayer, brother Dee Bowman of Houston, Texas spoke eloquently on the subject of death. He described how sometimes death suddenly snatches one from the midst of life, sometimes stalks one down as a hunted animal, and sometimes comes as a welcome guest to relieve one from his sufferings. In sister Adams’ case, her death brought relief from the suffering associated with her disease and its treatment.
He reminded us that all men must cross over from earth life to eternity. For the Christian, death is the gateway into eternal life with God and Christ. Inasmuch as sister Adams lived a life of faith, we have the confident assurance that her life is far better in heaven than continuing the sufferings in her fight against cancer.
After dismissing the congregation, the congregation moved to the Hebron Cemetery where her body was committed back to the earth. We look forward to the great resurrection morning when her body and spirit shall be reunited and we all enter the eternal bliss of heaven.
To brother Connie Adams and his family, we extend our sympathies. Only those who have also lost a companion of many years can know his grief. However, I know he will find comfort in the days which lie ahead in the knowledge of the life which sister Adams lived and in the assurance of heaven which the Bible promises to the faithful. May God be with you, my brother, as you continue to go with God.
Guardian of Truth XXIX: 8, p. 22
April 18, 1985