Saying goodbye to Billy Graham
My heart is a little sad today as I think about the passing of the Reverend Billy Graham. I’m not sad for him. I can only imagine the reception he’s receiving in heaven right now. I’m quite sure there are thousands maybe even millions of people there celebrating his arrival. I know there are millions more that will join them there someday soon. What an impact he has made upon this world and in heaven by allowing the Holy Spirit to flow through him as he shared the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Billy Graham was a bright light that pointed directly at Jesus.
I’m a huge fan of the man, so much so that we named our youngest son after him. I pray that by naming him after Billy Graham, our boy Carter Graham will grow up and become a little like him. I pray that Carter will also let his light shine bright for our Heavenly Father in a powerful way.
A light shining in the darkness.
Leaving a legacy
I don’t know of anyone in our generation or in any generation since the Apostle Paul that has reached more people for the Kingdom of Christ. I never met the man nor been to one of his crusades but I miss him none the less. Knowing that he no longer lives here with us makes this world seem to be a slightly darker place.
I’m feeling little bit like I felt when my parents went home to heaven. Obviously it’s a different kind of loss for me personally. The loss I’m feeling is not necessarily just for me but for the world in general. At my mother’s funeral my siblings and I shared what Mom meant to us and the legacy she left behind. That day I said the world seemed just a little darker than it was before she passed. Mom was the kind of Christian most of us long to be. She brought the light of Jesus wherever she went because she let His presence in her heart and her life shine brightly for all to see.
Billy Graham obviously did the same thing just on a grander scale.
He literally shared and brought the light of Jesus Christ all over the world.
Judging by the way his children also serve the Lord, his light muwt have also burned bright at home. The flame God placed in him burned bright enough so that hundreds of millions of souls heard and saw the Great Light of the World. The great thing is that although his home is now in heaven, his legacy here lives on.
Jesus Christ let His light shine when He died on the cross to save us and to take away our sins so we could live with Him in heaven for all eternity. No legacy is greater than that! As followers of Christ, however, it is one that we all are called to shine as well.
Who will take his place?
One comforting thought is that God is still in the business of igniting hearts to reach the world.
Mark Batterson, in his latest book Whisper, writes about an amazing account from a young Billy Graham’s life. He had traveled to England with his college classmates and teacher to study. While visiting the former home of John Wesley, now a museum, the students saw kneeholes in the floor next to John Wesley’s bed. Wesley had spent hours upon hours in prayer until the floor under his knees was completely worn. When it was time to leave, Billy was missing. His teacher found him knelt with his knees in these same holes praying, “Oh Lord, do it again!’
Who will be the next young man or woman to fall to their knees and humbly ask to be such a light to the world?
We All Can Shine Brighter
Last night as I tucked Carter in and prayed with him I prayed for the Graham family asking God to comfort them as they are undoubtedly going to miss that great man of God. After praying my son asked me “Dad, who is Billy Graham?” I told him he’s the man we got your middle name from. We named you after him because he is wonderful preacher that has preached to hundreds of millions of people and led many of those people to Jesus. We gave you his name because we want you to a great man of God too.
My wife and I often pray that God will ignite in our three boys a flame that will burn bright enough that the whole world will see it. I pray that same thing for all of us. It’s why we write this blog. It’s right there in the name. We desire to ignite families for God and for His Kingdom.
Today I’d like to challenge all of us to shine brighter than ever. We’ve got a lot of light to make up for with the passing of Billy Graham and the countless others who have gone on to their eternal reward. If we’ll accept this challenge and let the Holy Spirit breath on our flame we too can be ignited and chase away the darkness with light of Jesus Christ burning in us for all to see.
Oh Lord, Do it again!