Billy Graham is renown for his deep integrity. My friend Greg Laurie, who knew him well, says, “Billy Graham was the same person in private that he was in public.”
Billy wasn’t in ministry for the fame, or fortune. Being such a successful public figure, he had many opportunities come his way, but he always kept his focus on what God had called him to do — tell more people about the saving grace of Jesus.
Let’s all commit to walk in greater integrity, with the aim that who we are in private matches up to our public devotion to Jesus.
Billy Graham was always careful to give God the glory. For a record-breaking sixty consecutive years, he was named on the most admired people in the world list , and yet he always knew it was about the Lord.
It was recently shared that he placed the text of Galatians 6:14 in many places around his home,
“But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.”
In his weaknesses, and his successes, he kept His eyes on the Lord, and faithfully served in a way to make much of Jesus, not much of himself. And God has honored him for this legacy.
What if we strove to make more of Jesus than of ourselves? In the words of John the Baptist, ” He must become greater and greater. I must become less and less. ”
Billy Graham had such a genuine love and care for other people. He had such an authenticity about him that drew other people in. Even if you disagreed with what he said, it was hard not to like him.
During one of his first ministry trips to England, Billy shared a meal with one of his greatest newspaper critics. After their time together, his critic commented, “I may not agree with everything he says, but he is genuine.” Tolerance doesn’t mean you agree on everything. Tolerance is more about how you treat those you disagree with.
Are you authentic? Let’s all work to walk in a greater care and authenticity to the world around us.
Billy Graham has shared, ” It’s the Holy Spirit’s job to convict. It’s God’s job to judge. It’s my job to love. ”
Billy Graham lived a life of love. Love for his family, love for his friends, and truly a love for the whole world. He endured hardships and kept a simple focus on helping more and more people come to know the love of God in their own lives. His life was driven by love for God and love for other people.
Can people around you see God’s love in you? May God’s love fill our hearts in a greater way and overflow on the world around us in days to come.
Billy Graham truly believed the gospel was the hope of the world, and his life backed it up. He proclaimed the gospel to hundreds of millions of people live, in person, and countless more through television and radio broadcasts.
His message was always simply focused on the gospel of Jesus Christ to transform the human heart. I stand in awe of how God used him over and over again to point people back to Jesus. He once stated:
“I have found that when I present the simple message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, with authority, quoting from the very Word of God, He takes that message and drives it supernaturally into the human heart.”
Billy Graham’s life gives us hope that God can use us too when we are faithful to proclaim the message about Jesus to our friends, neighbors, and co-workers.