Eddie Lamar (Ed) Smith was born on September 23, 1957 in Rome, Georgia to Edward David (David) Smith and Cordelia Caldwell Smith. Ed’s childhood home was on Eden Valley in Southeast Rome, and he attended Pepperell School System from first grade until graduation. As a high school Junior, Ed enrolled in a three year high school electronics program at Coosa Valley Vocational High School in Rome. Ed was able to complete a three year program with honors in two years plus one Summer School enrollment.
Upon graduation, Ed enrolled at Wesley College in Florence, Mississippi, where he began his work in the ministry. That was in August, 1976, and while in that school, Ed met the love of his life, Marie. They married in 1979 and immediately started full time ministry working as a part time pastor as well as at a Christian Radio Station in the area.
During those early years in the ministry, Ed’s calling to the ministry (which included preaching and teaching the Gospel plus working in Christian Radio Broadcasting) proved somewhat controversial among his peers. Being accused of “following his ego,” Ed endured many criticisms from well-meaning pastors and other leaders who encouraged him to leave the idea of broadcasting behind him and pursue the Pastorate full time. It was on the evening of March 18, 1983 that all those doubts and confusion was settled. Ed was working at a local Christian radio station in Forsyth, Georgia, filling in for a high school boy who had called in sick that day that “the phone call” came in. It was a woman who said, “Are you for real, or is this just a job?” Ed replied, “I mean every word I’ve said on the air. Why do you ask?” “Because,” the woman said. “Unless you can give me a good reason why I shouldn’t, I have a pistol and I’m going to blow my brains out.” That evening, God used Ed to talk this woman down from suicide. Eventually, she would leave the area and go live somewhere else. Writing in a letter enclosed in a Christmas Card she sent that November, she said, “I am so grateful you were working at that station that night. I had no hope, but you showed me Jesus and I was convinced the God of my childhood could indeed help me through this. You talked me out of taking my own life and now, my son and I are both saved and involved in a local church here. You saved my life, and likely the life of my son; but more importantly, you helped me find salvation for my soul through Christ. Please never quit doing what you’re doing.
That night on March 18, 1983, Ed got down on his knees behind that junky console on carpet that was so filthy it belonged on the garbage pile and prayed to God, promising Him that he’d never leave this calling so long as God would keep the doors open. There has been no more doubt that God called Ed Smith to Christian Radio, and now has expanded that calling to include many different types of media.
Since that day, Ed has worked in Christian Broadcasting as a Radio Announcer, General Manager of a radio station, News Anchor, Production Director, Fund Raising Consultant and participant on air, Development and construction of multiple radio station facilities including helping to build one national Christian Radio network. Nowadays, Ed is Founder, President, Senior Pastor and General Manager of Joy Christian Radio, a small network of Christian Stations in the Southeast US. Ed and his wife, Marie have three grown sons who are all married. They have a total of 13 grandchildren and one God-Son.
Learn more about Joy Christian Radio at the website: