I’ve always wanted to thank Billy Graham in person. After all, he was the one I heard speaking on that radio program a Sunday evening many years ago. For some reason I heard the ‘Hour of Decision’ with Billy Graham. I had gone to Sunday School sporadically, but never really liked it or the church that I attended!
You ask why I didn’t go somewhere else? I didn’t know that you were supposed to enjoy church. I had questions about God and Jesus, but no one I knew had any answers. Anyway, ‘you just don’t talk about those things’, even in church. You don’t? Really? We didn’t.
I had no idea that some people did and that there were answers to my questions. No idea at all. Until that night. I focused on his every word. He said that Jesus loved me. Jesus knew who I was. He cared…about me. And wanted to be in my life. Are you kidding?
In a way, I didn’t know what Billy Graham was talking about, but something within said to ‘go for it’. I responded to that message. The next day I got the Bible, never opened, that I received when I was 8 years old and started reading the New Testament. Had Mr. Graham told me to? I don’t remember.
Then I discovered a couple of teachers in high school who were Christians. One was an older woman that we would make fun of. She was not so weird once I discovered that she also knew the Lord. In 1964 my father and I loved going to the New York World’s Fair. We went 12 times! It was there that I got my very first Bible Study, the Gospel of John, from the Billy Graham Pavilion. How exciting– and from that same preacher.
I’d like to thank him in person. I almost have. Was a counselor at a New York City crusade but he was too far away. Saw Anne Graham Lotz, his daughter, at the Pike Place Market in Seattle and asked her to thank her Dad. I’ll bet I’m the only one who ever asked her to do that!
While at the Cove, Billy Graham’s Conference Center in Asheville, North Carolina, I sat next to his first cousin, Ed Graham, at dinner. I asked him the same…please tell your cousin what his ministry has meant to me. I’d still like to thank him… in person. But it’s not going to happen.
No problem really. He didn’t save me. He would tell me that also. Jesus did. And I can thank Him whenever I feel like it. Direct and personal. Like it says in Psalm 108:3–‘I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples; I will sing praises to you among the nations.’ And someday I’ll get to thank Jesus in person for all He’s done for me…and you can join me as well!
Prayer: Thank you, Jesus, for saving us. Amen.