Billy Graham, better known as “America’s Pastor”, has passed away at the age of 99 on February 21st, 2018.
The pastor was one of the most famous Christian evangelists in the world, whose influence extended all the way to the White House and beyond.
Pastor Graham began preaching in the 1940’s. His empassioned teachings soon made hime the face of the new wave of evangelical Christianity, as well as an advisor for a long line of US presidents.
Among others, he acted as advisor to presidents Lyndon Johnson, Gearge W. Bush, and Bill Clinton. George W. Bush even stated that he would not be president without Graham by his side as council.
Pastor Graham says of the presidents he advised: “Each one I’ve known long before they ever became president, been in their homes many times; always called them by their first names, until they became president.”
Today marks the start of a year-long celebration honoring God for the work He's done through Billy Graham. Join the…
Despite his failing health, Pastor Graham remained active in his calling right up until his death. In 2011, he released his 30th book, “Nearing Home: Life, Faith, and Finishing Well.” He was 93 years old. In the same year, over 60 year’s worth of audio recordings of his ministry were put into an online database for everyone to access.
It's almost time for My Hope America with Billy Graham. If you or your church haven't signed up to be part of this nationwide evangelism event, visit here: http://myhopewithbillygraham.org
In his later years, Graham moved away from politics to place an even bigger focus in religion and spreading the Gospel. He didn’t want to divide his national congregation by endorsing political candidates.
“If I get on these other subjects, it divides the audience on an issue that is not the issue I’m promoting,” the pastor said. “I’m just promoting the Gospel.”
Billy Graham and a soldier in Korea during the Korean War.
Last words to live by
The pastor’s health has been in decline ever since he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 1989, and he has always been quick to offer his outlook on his own mortality.
In his autobiography, he wrote about the first thing he would do when he got to heaven:
“I have often said that the first thing I am going to do when I get to Heaven is ask: ‘Why me, Lord? Why did You choose a farm boy from North Carolina to preach to so many people, to have such a wonderful team of associates, and to have a part in what You were doing in the latter half of the 20th century?’
I have thought about that question a great deal, but I know also that only God knows the answer.”
And now, just hours before his death, he posted his final message on social media, and Christian’s around the world are embracing the powerful words about the importance of following God.
"If you went for a walk in the woods, but then decided to wander off the path, and found yourself surrounded by a…
The pastor wrote:
“If you went for a walk in the woods, but decided to wander off the path and found yourself surrounded by a thicket of thorns and poison ivy, who would you blame? Would you blame who built the path? No, of course not. Instead you’d blame yourself if you were honest, because you alone were responsible for wandering from the path.
In a far deeper way, this is what happens when we decide to leave God out of our lives. For a time, it may seem like wandering away from Him doesn’t make any difference; it may seem easier and freer. But eventually it catches up with us – just as wandering off that path and into the thicket caught up with you.”
You can see Pastor Graham doing what he does best in the clip below. RIP Pastor, you left a mark that will be hard to forget, and last words that we can all live by.
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