One of the things I like to do is read in bed before I fell asleep. One night, about a year ago, I was reading Billy Graham’s autobiography, “Just as I Am”. He wrote it in 1997 at the age of seventy-nine. Today Billy Graham is 95. He recently gave his last sermon on television entitled “My Hope for America”.
When I started reading Billy Graham’s book one night in bed I was startled by what he writes in the introduction. He says it has taken him 10 years to write the book because he was still busy preaching the gospel all over the world. His next sentenced is what startled me. He found it difficult to write because “I have had to deal with numerous problems, including several illnesses and accidents”.
When I read that last sentence I put the book down. Didn’t read anymore. In fact, I have still not read beyond the first couple of chapters. Mmmm…. Billy Graham has problems too. I guess I was surprised. Somebody as spiritually successful as Billy Graham deserves better treatment during his later years. Doesn’t he? Shouldn’t he be allowed to go to his grave without “numerous problems, including illnesses and accidents”.
There are some days I feel overwhelmed with numerous problems. In that one aspect, I am in the same company as Billy Graham! As God’s children, don’t we sometimes think that God owes us a better life? After all I have been such a good Christian! (Oh what an evil thought this is!).
God tells us:
“In the world you have tribulation…” (John 16:33)
“Through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God”. (Acts 14:22)
“The whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth… but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves”. (Romans 8:22,23)
“Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you” (1Pe 4:12)
Thank you Billy Graham for admitting that you have problems too.