Above, Don Wildmon, circa 1988
July-August 2017 – It was a Saturday morning, about 1979. Don Wildmon was dripping sweat, mowing the lawn, and going over and over in his mind, “How are we gonna pay the bills?” Then his wife Lynda came out to interrupt.
“You need to come in the house and answer this phone call,” she said.
He wasn’t excited about a phone call, but it was an excuse to get out of the hot, humid Mississippi day.
“Hello,” he said.
“Bro. Don, why aren’t you at that big conservative meeting in Dallas? You know President Reagan’s speaking.”
“Two reasons. One, I’m flat broke. Two, I already know what they’re saying.” (Terse and transparent – vintage Don Wildmon.)
“Broke, really? Well, tell me about your ministry right now. How much do you need to raise?”
“We’ve got about five thousand due in the next few days.”
“Huh! My wife and I have prayed about helpin’ you out a little, and the check’s already written, sealed in the envelope, stamped, and addressed. It’s lyin’ on the mantle, waitin’ to be mailed. And oh, by the way. It’s for five thousand bucks.”
He trusted God then
Don Wildmon was trusting a God he knew to be faithful 40 years ago when he founded National Federation for Decency (American Family Association since 1988). Bro. Don’s dogged determination to protect families and restore moral values in our nation has informed, inspired, motivated, and challenged countless Christ followers to enlist in an army of activists compelled to change our culture for the better.
He is the epitome of faithfulness.
AFA Journal staff decided to celebrate our fortieth anniversary by turning the spotlight not on ourselves, but on 40 of you – true activists, men and women who have appeared on our pages over the years. You’ll see names you know, and probably several you’ve never heard of. You’ll see leaders and followers, simply men and women faithful to follow Christ, to be salt and light in the areas they’ve been called to address – public policy, life and adoption, marriage and family, pornography and sexual chaos, education, entertainment, religious freedom – any issue that has an impact on the family.
While many noteworthy leaders in the Christian community have gone on to glory in the past four decades, you won’t see them on these pages. Certainly it is fitting to remember them with gratitude, but we decided to focus on 40 who are still living and serving for the good of the Kingdom of God and for the future of our republic. (Please note that the numbering indicates no “ranking” – it just kept us focused on 40!)
It was not easy to narrow the list down to 40 faithful, and in our hearts, these featured few represent all of you faithful supporters and friends of AFA. We know that you, too, serve faithfully in your families, your communities, your states. We salute you, our faithful friends and fellow soldiers in the culture war.
We trust Him still
“In God We Trust,” our national motto, could well have been Bro. Don’s personal and AFA’s ministry motto through these years. As AFA is embarking on another motto-based initiative, we hope it will motivate all of us to be more faithful to the cause of Christ.
We know you’ll want to join with us as we strive to restore “In God We Trust” as the true guiding principle of the U.S.
Meanwhile, we want to say thanks to you, the thousands who are faithful to AFA, to our nation, to your families, and to our great God. May He bless you with wisdom, strength, grace, and courage for every task He puts
Our Call to Faithfulness: The Voice and Legacy of Don Wildmon is a collection of AFA Journal columns written by AFA’s founder. His timeless insights and wisdom cover a variety of topics related to cultural issues, personal living, and Christian activism.
Available at afastore.net.
Other articles in the 40 FAITHFUL series
God’s first institution
God’s image in man
God’s Word and words
God and government
God’s view of sexuality