Today I had the privilege of eating lunch with Billy Graham’s grandson, Evangelist Will Graham.
For the past 2 ½ years a large group of pastors and laypersons from our city have been planning a Will Graham Evangelistic Event for our region. In April of this next year Will Graham, in partnership with our churches, will be conducting a multi-day event to saturate our city with the good news of Jesus Christ.
Today was our launch event and by divine providence my staff and I had the blessing of eating lunch at Will Graham’s table. I deeply enjoyed getting to know this man and learn of his ministry.
I opened the conversation by expressing my appreciation for the way his father, Franklin Graham, handled the care of Dr. Kent Brantly, the famed ebola virus survivor so prominent in the media these days. Without the efforts of Graham and the Samaritan’s Purse ministry Dr. Brantly would not have received the life saving care that he desperately needed. Franklin and his staff worked round the clock to make the needed negotiations for Brantly’s careful return to the states. Will was quick to tell me that it was the efforts of President Obama to expedite the process of Brantly’s return to the states that really made the difference.
There are many lessons that could be drawn from today’s event and my meeting of Will Graham. But there was one that stood out most for me.
Will reminded us of what Jesus said in Matthew 9:37, “The harvest truly is plentiful.” (NKJV) Jesus was referring to the people who need the Lord and are ready to receive Christ as the Lord and Savior of their lives.
He told us that we would all strive to share the gospel in April when the Graham Evangelistic Event would be conducted. But then he very seriously reminded us of an important truth.
The harvest is ready now! He said, don’t wait for the evangelistic event to start sharing Jesus with those around you. There are people in our families, among our friends, and folks in our community that are ready to hear and respond to Christ now.
He reminded us that God is always at work in the lives of people around us readying them to hear the good news of Jesus.
But so many times we shrink back from sharing the gospel with them. We say, “our relationship with them is not strong enough for me to broach a spiritual subject.” Or “I don’t think they are ready for this yet.” But who are we to judge that?
We need to take Jesus at his word and know that many souls around us are ready to be harvested for the Kingdom. All we must do is share the message of Christ with them so that they too can respond to the good news of salvation.
Jesus came to bring people from all walks of life into a redeemed and glorious relationship with God the Father. We who sinned against God were deserving of death and hell, but God in his great mercy sent his perfect, sinless Son, to bear our sins on the cross. Because of this we can place our faith in Christ, surrender to him as Lord, and know that our sins are forgiven and that in him we have eternal life.
This is a message that people need to hear now. Not later, but now. God has prepared a harvest to be gathered all around us, a harvest of people ready to be brought to the Lord through faith in Christ.
So this week when a door of opportunity to discuss spiritual matters and share the gospel affords itself, walk through that passage way, open your mouth, and share the good news of Jesus. Sure, not everyone will respond in faith right away. But you might be surprised how many people will be ready for the message and open to giving their lives to Jesus Christ.
Question: Many of us shrink back from sharing our faith in Jesus. Why do you think that is and what can we do to overcome those barriers to our personal sharing of the good news of Jesus? You can leave a comment by clicking here.