Oh, those preacher stories

While skimming an old teacher magazine from around WWI era, I came across an article where the author (favourably)  referred to ‘the old darkie’ who always prayed and asked the Lord to ‘prop me up on the leaning side.’  I liked the word picture of asking for propping on the leaning side, but know but I still do feel shocked when I come across that other term and the like, that I have forgotten what the rest of the article was about entirely.  Later, I was thinking about it and couldn’t remember.

I tried to look it up, because surely ‘prop me up on the leaning side’ is kind of specific and singular, right? Not so much.  It’s apparently a common preacher story, only the praying man has often morphed into an old deacon.  Occasionally he’s become the speaker himself in these online sermons, the authors claiming it’s based on the old barn, shanty, or other outbuilding on the property where they grew up.  Well, maybe so.

But there’s a reason why preacher’s kids and others familiar with the practice tend to ask, “Is this a preacher story or did it really happen?”

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