“What’s the big deal?”
A question I've heard frequently related to the late Billy Graham. People are questioning the "big deal" surrounding all the attention given to the death and life of Reverend Billy Graham.
I can only surmise this question comes from a place of unawareness.
If I'm honest, I might have said the same thing only a few months ago. It wasn’t until I visited the Billy Graham library that I had a full appreciation for the magnitude and reach of this one man's life.
A simple farm boy from the countryside of Charlotte, North Carolina who became a man of extraordinary influence. A man that spoke truth and life to millions in over 185 countries, counseled 12 consecutive United States Presidents and was considered friends with royalty. He was even named by Gallup as one of the "Ten Most Admired Men in the World;” a distinction he has received more than 50 times.
Billy Graham was known for his charisma, forceful preaching, and his pure message: anyone who repents of their sins and accepts Jesus Christ will be saved.
In over 60 years of ministry, he never wavered in his beliefs and never shied away from speaking truth- even in the face of opposition and unpopularity.
Pretty impressive life if you ask me that warrants a “big deal” response.
Honestly, I think folks have the question wrong. What they should be asking is “how was a simple farm boy from North Carolina able to accomplish so much?”
Answer: Complete faith and obedience.
At the age of 16, Billy Graham recognized and accepted the truth that God offers – “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only son that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.” ~John 3:16
That first step of faith placed Billy Graham on the road to greatness.
But I believe it was his obedience that was pivotal; obedience to God's calling on his life, obedience to Scripture and faithfully traveling that hard road that put God first above all else.
A walk of faith and obedience that had no room for hesitation, fear or shame.
“The will of God will not take us where the grace of God cannot sustain us.” ~ Rev. Billy Graham
It was in each step of that obedient walk that God carried him closer and closer to greatness and gave him the ability and tools to influence millions.
Thank goodness Billy Graham was faithful.
“Being a Christian is more than just an instantaneous conversion – it is a daily process whereby you grow to be more and more like Christ.” ~ Rev. Billy Graham
May we all embrace “the big deal” that marked his life- that the Gospel is true and if we walk DAILY in faith and obedience God can use anyone to accomplish great things!
Thank you, Lord for the life and ministry of Billy Graham. May his legacy live on and may others "get the big deal" by accepting your truth and being willing to walk in humble obedience for your glory. All things are possible through the work of your hand; we ask that you let us be your hands and feet in this broken world.
“For nothing is impossible with God." ~Luke 1:37