Thursday, May 1, 2008

Visiting the Billy Graham Museum

When I went to Illinois last week for the Preschool/Children's Conference at Willow Creek Church, I hadn't thought that I would get to really see other stuff in the Chicago area. But...nerd that I am I asked if we (our children's minister, my Preschool Associate and myself) could go to see the school that instructed the likes of Jim and Elizabeth Elliott and Ruth and Billy Graham. So... they graciously agreed and off we went. Now my associate, Susan, has a son attending graduate school there. So she had been before to the campus. So she suggested that we go and see the Billy Graham museum. Poor thing I think she thought we would say sure and then look it over for 10 mins and leave. But she didn't count on her fellow travellers liking histroy and being fascinated with the information and items housed in the museum. Now I told you about the Warner Sallman exhibit that is showing  in the Temporary Artist area in my previous blog entry so I won't go into any more detail about that. But the Billy Graham Museum was more than just a testament to the man and his ministry. It was a walk through the history of the spread of the Gospel through the ages since the birth of the early church. It was emotional for me to listen to some of the crusade clips because of the impact Billy Graham and his ministry has had on my life. After you left the area honoring his life, you walked into a room with 6 rows of benches and a large screen on the wall. As you entered this room the screen came to life with film footage of Billy Graham and a challenge message to believers today: to go out and share the good news of Jesus Christ.   This actually gave me chills. It was so humbling to hear him issue this
challenge. He is in his 90's and has given his life to lead the world to Jesus. And here am I. What am I doing, really in this battle to share the good news? Then we walked through a cross shaped doorway and saw before an old wooden cross.  And then you turned left and walked through this small hallway and then on yourright you saw a stone wall with the great commission carved into it and lit from behind. Then facing you on the opposite wall was a mural with the faces of the men and women who have gone before us all sharing the gospel and many martyred for being obedient even unto death.  Turning right we walked into another room that had blue walls with white puffy clouds painted on it and as you were looking down there were mirrors on the floor.   It gave the sensation of your standing in the clouds. Our reward, after we run the race is eternal rest in the Presence of God, Jesus and His Angels. How awesome is that thought??? 
So can you tell that this was an enormously moving exp
erience for me? It was. I wish that I had, had more time to just ponder everything there.  

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