Billy Graham

I have seen many, many posts about Billy Graham. I’m old enough to have vague memories of when he got started. There is no doubt about his impact for Christ, and he was indeed a vital, inspiring preacher of the gospel. He was one of the greats of the last century, and this century as well. And so, by the way, was his wife.


I have also read that people have heard or read that now that Billy is gone, the power of the gospel will disappear from America.

Dr. Graham would be the first to stand against such an encomium. It is true that his influence was world-wide, and many thousands of souls are and will be in heaven because of his work.

But the Holy Spirit of God is not removed from America or any other place in the world because of the death of one man, no matter how much of a giant of God he may have been.

I’m thinking of the thousands of humble pastors laboring in churches large and small across America. Many of them are underpaid and overworked. Many will live their lives, serving God and their congregations, with no fanfare or recognition. Their wives will labor quietly beside them, and never achieve national prominence.

When they step on shore and find it heaven, touch a hand and find it God’s, I believe they will hear the exact same words as Billy Graham: “Well done, thou good and faithful servant.”

Billy Graham may have been America’s pastor. That was the call God placed on his life and in his heart. It is no less a calling to be the unknown, faithful pastor of a church no one will remember 50 years from now. The work needs to be done. God calls men and women to do it. And He gifts them according to their calling.

When Christ comes to take all believers out of this world, THEN the Holy Spirit will be removed from this nation and all the nations of the world. In the meantime, let’s not forget to honor our pastors and other ministers of God in our local churches.

Billy Graham deserves the praise he is receiving, but I’m dead certain he would simply bow his head and say, “All glory to God.”


Sunday Morning Coffee: Hilton Head

We’re in a lovely condo with two couples we’ve know for years.  We were up late last night, so no one was stirring much this morning.  Late breakfast, and now we’re settling in for a time of Bible reading, maybe some singing, and prayer–our church service while we’re on vacation.

I’m already feeling more relaxed.  Slept like a rock last night.  We had no problems with our flight, except that the pilot took the plan north for a while to avoid a big flock of birds, probably geese. 276fe51200000578-0-image-a-122_1428681940414

Being with friends you’ve known for years is a delight.  This will  be a good week.

An hour later, we’re still talking about the things of the Lord.  Laughter, tears, shared blessings.

Yes, this will be a good week.


Sunday Morning Coffee: New Year’s Eve

And I’m home nursing a nasty cold that keeps playing hide and go seek with me.  It’s bad, it’s better, and I start feeling optimistic.  Then it’s bad again. So, for the sake of everyone around me, I decided not to share my sore throat and coughing/sneezing fits with my church family this morning.


So I’m thinking about the new year. 2018.   This is the 70th new year I’ve seen, although I wasn’t aware of the first few 🙂  That’s a lot of years, and here are some things I’ve learned.

  1.  New Year’s resolutions don’t work for me.  I end up becoming discouraged.
  2. Day-to-day works much better.  Just for today, I can do all kinds of things.  I know it’s just a mind game, but still.
  3. Don’t ever take the next year–or the next  day–for granted. Treasure each one. There may not be another.
  4. Same goes for the people in your life. They may not have a tomorrow, so treasure today.
  5. Be thankful.  Be thankful to God for every blessing. If you’re feeling down, discouraged, depressed–there is a remedy.  Count your blessings.  Can’t think of any?  Go read Psalm 107, then read it again, prayerfully.
  6. Here’s a counseling tip:  If you depend on your feelings to guide your behavior, you’re asking for trouble.  Feelings change from day to day. Instead, you need to depend on what you KNOW is truth, based on God’s Word.   From my years in counseling, I could tell you story after story of people who relied on their feelings and ended up in terrible trouble, not understanding how it happened.   Feelings are driven by what we believe to be true. If you believe your feelings are true, you’re going to be terribly confused from one day to the next.
  7. Most important:  Do you know Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior?  Then be thankful for that, and share Him with someone else.  If you aren’t sure,  go to the Gospel of John and read it carefully.  It will give you the facts on Who Jesus is, why He came, and how you can have forgiveness and eternal life with Him.

So Happy New Year to all of you, and thank you so, so much for reading and following my blog.  You are a great encouragement to me.

Heaven’s Gain

One of our closest friends went home to heaven last night. We’d been to visit  in the afternoon, and it was clear that it wouldn’t be long.

There are tears this morning.  We’re going to miss him so much.  But the tears are accompanied by the wonderful memories, and by the sure knowledge that he knew the Lord as his Savior, and is rejoicing in the presence of God at this moment. He’d been sick for a long time, and his body is perfect now.  No more tears, no more pain, no more sickness or dying.




Well, Thanksgiving Day has come and gone. We were left with three happy grandchildren who seem to think staying overnight with us is some kind of  a treat 🙂  We had a very good day with family and close friends, way too much food, and a definite turkey torpor.

Before we ate, we all shared a favorite verse about praise or thanksgiving, and then we sang Praise God From Whom all Blessings Flow.  I think it’s important for us to remember that Thanksgiving Day isn’t just about stuffing the turkey or our faces; rather, it is to take the time to remember how God has blessed us personally, and in our country, and in our freedom to worship God as we choose, and when and where we choose. There are those who would take that freedom away from us, as others who have their heads buried in the sand, trying to pretend we have no real enemies.

They’re going to be sadly surprised.

Well, I have a fairly calm day ahead. We’ll be eating yummy leftovers today, so my day will be a lot more lazy than it was yesterday 🙂

And I will NOT be out with all the other Black Friday shoppers. No way.



A Couple of Days Off

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day here in America.  I have lots of food prep to do today, and company coming tomorrow.  My heart if full of gratitude that, for the first time in over two years, I am able to host the gathering here.  I love my God, Who has blessed my life so richly.

Psalm 107 is a favorite of mine.  Here’s the first verse, which is repeated at intervals throughout the Psalm.  Read it.  You’ll be glad you did.

To all my American friends, and any others around the world who may be celebrating this day, best wishes for a warm and wonderful time with family and friends, and in remembering the God Who gave us our wonderful world.


Sunday Morning Coffee: Viruses are Nasty

I got up on Friday feeling just fine. Went to the dentist and still felt fine. It wasn’t until later in the day that all my muscles started to hurt, and I couldn’t get warm.  No appetite, and my temp went up a couple of degrees.

The only thing I can figure out is that I’ve been fighting a cold for a couple of weeks now, and maybe it finally decided to  leave, but not without a rip-roaring farewell party.  I’m still weak this morning, and can’t seem to get enough sleep. So far, the coughing and sneezing have stopped. Sure did put a stop to my plans for the weekend, though. I’ve been pretty useless.

So I’ve been thinking about how my virus can be compared to sin. It can creep up on you a little at a time.  Remember I Peter 5:8? “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.”



Some years ago, I learned that there is a substance in a lion’s paws that absorbs sounds, so that when the lion is  stalking prey, there is almost no noise as each pad sets down on the rustle of grass and twigs.   That’s Satan, padding quietly about, looking for the weak, the one separated from the herd, the old, the sick. The vulnerable.

We are all vulnerable to temptation and sin.  And when it gets a strong hold, as in II Cor. 10: 4-6, it takes  the power of the Holy Spirit to  break the hold of sin and send it packing.  In the process,  there can be some damage, and confession and repentance must be a part of the process.

Just as we try to prevent physical illness by eating well, resting, exercising–so we must be on guard against spiritual illness by staying in prayer, in the Word, and fellowship with God’s people .  Physical health must be purposefully maintained. So must spiritual health be purposefully maintained.