The news broke yesterday that Billy Graham passed away after a full life and 60+ years of public ministry.
The Lord worked through him to share the Gospel with millions of people, and he will be deeply missed. Below are few of his quotes I’d like to share as I reflect on his legacy of pointing people to Jesus.
What He Said about this Day:
We’ve encouraged everyone at Summit to read through the Gospel of John this month as a part of our Be the Message journey. Today’s reading is John 14, and I love the promise that Jesus shares in John 14:1-6.
Jesus declares that he is the way, the truth and the life (and is going ahead to prepare a place in heaven for us). If your hope is in Christ, you can have that same confidence!
The Greatest Need in the World:
“The greatest need in the world is the transformation of human nature. We need a new heart that will not have lust and greed and hate in it. We need a heart filled with love and peace and joy, and that is why Jesus came into the world. He died on the cross to make peace between us and God and to change us from within by His Spirit. He can change you, if you will turn to Him in repentance and faith.”
Billy Graham understood that the biggest problem in life is our sinful human nature. Until we recognize our own sinfulness, we’ll never see a need for a Savior.
I love how the Apostle John talks about that later in his life and ministry: “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:8-9)
Receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom:
“All that I have been able to do, I owe to Jesus Christ. When you honor me, you are really honoring Him. Any honors I have received, I accept with a sense of inadequacy and humility, and I will reserve the right to hand all of these someday to Christ, when I see Him face-to-face.”
When Billy Graham received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1983, he used the opportunity (once again) to point to Jesus.
Many people have shared stories in the last 24 hours about ways that Billy Graham was a genuine and down-to-earth pastor. In spite of great success and media attention, he tried to live with humility. When we focus on Christ, it has a wonderful way of putting things into perspective!
The Greatest Act of Love:
“I am convinced the greatest act of love we can ever perform for people is to tell them about God’s love for them in Christ.”
Billy Graham saw that as his primary calling in life. The Lord gave him a unique platform, but the truth is that all Christians are given opportunities to share about Jesus.
As I think about Pastor Graham’s legacy, I find myself praying for the Lord to fill our church (and me) with even greater passion to reach those who don’t yet know Jesus.
When you choose to Be the Message in words and action, you never know the difference it will make!
Keep trusting in Jesus. Watch for opportunities. Let His light shine through you. And I pray that one day we will meet many more friends in heaven because of what Jesus does through you (and our church) in the days to come.
Yours in Christ,