Billy Graham’s died today. I hesitate to say that because he is more alive than he has ever been in heaven with Jesus. Was Billy Graham perfect? No, no man except Christ was perfect and He was also God. What are some things we might could from Billy Graham’s faith and indeed his life? I am sure this is not an exhaustive list, it will give each of us the opportunity to reflect and consider the impact of the Gospel in the heart of one who has given their lives to it.
Billy came to saving faith in Jesus Christ at the age of sixteen. A few years later when he was about nineteen. He preached his first sermon. God used Evangelist Mordecai Ham to in a series of revival meetings to bring Billy and others to faith in Jesus. As Billy grew in his faith he too began to share his faith with others. He would later go on to speak to people in 185 different countries and territories sharing the gospel with millions of people over 80 years.
He met with and advised every President going back to Harry S. Truman except for our current President (because of his health). His name has been one that has been an example of living rightly and keeping his name out of controversy. What can we learn from a man who has been a testimony to our Lord Jesus Christ?
My first question was, “was Billy Graham perfect?” No, he was not a perfect example, but as Mike Breen points out we are “living examples.” I believe Billy was a living example. He would often deflect any glory to point people to the glory of God in Christ Jesus. Keeping our focus on Christ and giving Christ the glory. I remember seeing an interview with Woody Allen years ago and he was telling him about sin and salvation. Woody begins to respond with the question, “so you’re telling me that I am a sinner…” Billy quickly, and gently corrects “No I am not telling you that, God is through God’s Word, the Bible.” We won’t be a perfect example either, but we can be living examples to those around us and point them to God’s Son, God’s Word, and God’s Glory.
He met with people of all levels of society, including Presidents and world leaders. He didn’t make a distinction about whether to meet with them based on their political affiliation or station in life. There are many today, that vilify the political party they do not feel represents them or their beliefs. God places people in our path to share His message it may not always be the people that we would choose. Will we be faithful to have gentle and honest discussions with others no matter they political persuasion, differing views, or station in life?
Be who you are in Christ and be faithful to what He called you to whether little or much. Billy was a gifted man, but God used Billy’s faithfulness to magnify those gifts. His strength of character allowed people to trust him and that allowed him to have a greater impact. You or I may not have the same gifts as Billy Graham, but our faithfulness to Christ, our willingness to be a living example, and to love people where they are and not where we hope they will be can help us to have an impact for the Kingdom of God in the world today.
Will you tell others about the amazing grace that saved your life? Will you live for him and not for yourself? The Apostle Paul at one point says, “follow me as I follow Christ.” Don’t follow anyone who is not following Christ. There may never be another Billy Graham, but God has His faithful of today, and you are one. God bless you my friends, as you seek to be living examples of Christ just like Billy.