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His yard signs have spread God’s Word around the world

BAY MINETTE, Ala. (BP)–Depending on which way one is traveling down Highway 193 in south Alabama, a small sign conspicuously placed in a resident’s yard can either give passersby a message of the Lord’s goodness or his wrath.
For example, those driving south might be encouraged by the warm, uplifting words of David found in Psalms: “Blessed is that man that maketh the Lord his trust (40:4).”
Northbound travelers, however, could receive a much different, less heartwarming message, such as the one found in Proverbs 13:13: “Whosoever despiseth the Word shall be destroyed.”
Malcolm Dickman, who estimates he has made more than 50,000 of the nearly waist-high yard signs since he started Wayside Scriptures 20 years ago, said this polarized presentation of God’s Word is intentional.
“I make sure that one side is positive and the other side is negative, to tell everything God said to tell,” said Dickman, 70.
His signs have graced yards in all 50 states and 18 countries — in five different languages, including German and Bulgarian — around the world.
The 24-by-18-inch signs, containing Scripture only, are given free to anyone who calls or writes to request one.
Dickman’s encouragement-spreading enterprise is funded by church and individual donations. The signs are framed, packed and shipped by volunteers from Bible Baptist Church in Beeville, Texas.
Dickman said he purposely made the signs changeable in the hopes that the owners will display fresh verses — he currently utilizes about 100 in his signs — every month or so.
By placing them in front of a house, business or church, Dickman, who lives in Bay Minette, Ala., and drives 50 miles to attend Bible Baptist Church in Pensacola, Fla., sees his signs as a ministry reaching commuters for Christ.
“It’s something to get the Word out,” he said.
And the letters he receives every day from people who have been blessed by his work encourage Dickman, who along with his wife, Peggy, can produce by a silkscreen process (through which he also makes a biblical bumper stickers) up to 300 signs per day.
“I’ve gotten a lot of good testimonies from people who have gotten saved [from reading a sign],” he said.
One of those testimonies came from a man in Mobile, Ala., who had to drive by a Scripture-laden sign every day on his way to work.
Robert Reed, pastor of Victory Baptist in Coden, shared the man’s story, saying because the sign “bothered him so much” the commuter finally got saved, joined a church and now has a sign in his own yard.
“Scripture is so convicting; it’s like a lion, you just turn it loose,” said Reed, who first saw a Wayside Scripture about seven years ago. He then wrote to Dickman for information about how his congregation could get involved.
The next week, after having Dickman come to the church and present his ministry, every member of Victory had a sign in their yard.
“It’s a good way to get somebody’s attention, because Scripture is so convicting,” Reed noted.
Dickman can be contacted at P.O. Box 5, Bay Minette, AL 36507 or (334) 937-8437.

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  • Jason Skinner