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A Poem by Ruth Bell Graham

By Ruth Bell Graham

Lay them quietly at His feet

one by one:

each desire, however sweet,

just begun;

dreams still hazy, growing bright;

hope just poised, winged for flight;

all your longing—each delight—

every one.

At His feet and leave them there,

never fear;

every heartache, crushing care—

trembling tear;

you will find Him always true,

men may fail you, friends be few,

He will prove Himself to you

far more dear.

Kendra’s Bible Study…Joshua 14:6-11

Welcome to Kendra Graham’s online Bible study.  This is a place where women can come together and share their journey towards Scriptural truths and spiritual maturity.  We pray this will be a safe, respectful, resourceful place to come and discuss God’s Word…to discover What it says…What it means…and What it means to you!

Kendra suggests you use the following process when studying Scripture.  We have included an example of this process from John 1:1.

Step 1:  Pray
Step 2: Read God’s Word (look at the passage)
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  
Step 3: What Does God’s Word Say? (list the facts)
1 In the beginning the Word was with God and was God.
Step 4: What Does God’s Word Mean? (learn the lessons)
1 God‘s Word is not just ancient philosophy, it is eternal Truth.
Step 5: What Does God’s Word Mean to Me? (listen to his voice)
1 How do I view the Bible?

Kendra Graham NOTES from Joshua 14:6-11 homework

FACTS: What does it say?

6: Caleb said, “You know what the LORD said to Moses”
7:  I was 40, when Moses sent me from Kades Barnea to explore the land. I brought back a report according to my convictions.
8: but my brothers who went with me made the hearts of the people melt with fear.  I followed the LORD my God wholeheartedly.
9: So Moses swore to me: “the land which your feet have walked will be your inheritance because you have followed the LORD my God wholeheartedly.
10:  NOW Just as the LORD promised He has kept me alive so here I am today 85!
11:  I am still as strong today as the day Moses sent me out; I’m just as vigorous now as I was then.

LESSONS: What does it mean?

6.    Do not forget the words of the LORD.
7.    STAND for the convictions of my heart and my God. It is so easy to stay quiet, afraid to “offend” others by the convictions of God’s Word.  Hey, its GOD’s Word, not mine.  They are God’s promises, not mine.  The question is do I believe GOD is who He says He is, or that He is a liar in my case.  God said the land was to be theirs.  Caleb believed it.  Simple, yet hard and complex in the face of reality!
8.   Consensus, even among godly leaders may not necessarily be what God has called them to.  When I know God has called me to something, what do I do?  There is ALWAYS a GAP when GOD calls…. there is that which I can do and that which GOD MUST DO… that GAP is called faith and obedience, and if were easy or if it always made sense and if the pieces always fell together from the onset, then where would God be needed in all that?  Am I quick to fall in with the crowd, the consensus? What has God called me to that He must accomplish in totality?
9.   Know that My God is faithful to complete and do that which He has promised to me.
10.  God’s promises are true.  When I act on God’s promises, and trust Him, walk the walk instead of focusing so much on talking the talk, I will find that I have a testimony, a personal testimony of God’s faithfulness to me!!!!  Often times we want this great amazing faith of Joshua, Caleb and Paul, yet we don’t want to have to obey and trust and struggle to get it…..  It is always worth it!!! If we could ask Joshua, Caleb and Paul, they would say, press in and press on!
11.  God gives me continued strength even when I should be weak.  When the world says you should be done…. maybe God is saying, “Hey, you are nowhere close!” 

APPLICATIONS, What does it mean to me? 

6.  Do I know what God’s Word says to me?  What has God said to me?  Have I forgotten the words God has spoken into my life over me?
7. Have I been quiet when God has asked me just to stand for what I believe in?  How have I been asked to stand for Him?  Did I stand tall or shrink back?  Am I so afraid of the reactions of others, even the reactions of other Christians, that I keep quiet on what God’s Word has charged me to do? Do I have any idea of what God’s Word has promised me?
8. Am I quick to fall in with the crowd, the consensus? What has God called me to that He must accomplish in totality?  Have I ever seen God miraculously fill in that GAP in my life and truly “Make all things work together for good?” What testimony of the GREATNESS of God am I missing out on in my life because I am afraid of that obedience?  AM I in God’s Word enough so that I know without a doubt what God has called me to?  AM I quick to walk away if people, even godly people do not support me?  Will I be like Caleb and “trust MY GOD wholeheartedly?”
9. DO I know what God has promised me?  Do I believe the promises of God?  DO I really believe that God will continue to be faithful to His Word, even when it involves me?  What do I really believe about who God is?
10. What is my testimony of God’s faithfulness?  When have I gone out on that limb and trusted that God would have to come through?  Am I pressing in and pressing on, hanging on by the skin of my teeth to who God says He is, or am I running the other way in fear?  Will I stick this out, to have the testimony in the end? Or am I done here and now?
11. What is it that You want to do through me, LORD?  Help my unbelief!

LIVE IT OUT:

Get into God’s Word daily, know what God is saying, know what GOD is promising, know who God is, and then live my life like He is telling the Truth!!!! LIVE OUT God’s Word on a daily basis in my life, in my family, in my community, at my school, and yes, even in my church!!!  LORD, Help my unbelief!!!

Share with us your lesson(s) and applications and what they mean to you.
Do you know someone that might be blessed by joining our study?
Please share this blog with them.

HOMEWORK: Joshua 14:12-15

A Poem by Ruth Bell Graham

 

 

 

 

 

 

From: Sitting by my laughing fire… 

…my shelf of peace…

This is my ledge
of quiet,
my shelf of peace,
edged
by its crooked rails
holding back the beyond.
Above,
a hawk sails
high
to challenge clouds
trespassing
my plot of sky.
Below
in the valley
remote and dim,
sounds
come and go,
a requiem
for quiet.
Here on my ledge,
quiet praise:
of birds,
crickets,
breeze -
in different ways;
and so do I -
for these:
my ledge of quiet,
my plot of sky;
for peace.

Click here to purchase Ruth Bell Graham’s book of poetry, Sitting by my laughing fire…

True Freedom

By Will Graham

I believe that most of us who have placed our faith in Jesus would agree that we have found the cure for the heart problem that ails the world. We’ve experienced the peace that passes all understanding, while every day we watch others sinking in despair with their hearts far from God. Sadly, it’s rare when we actually seize the opportunity to toss a rope to the man or woman beside us who is drowning in their hopelessness.

I was recently reminded why it is so important to not miss these chances to reach others when God offers you the opportunity. I was speaking at a weekend Celebration in Terrell, Texas, just east of Dallas. My good friend and ministry partner Todd Pierce, a rodeo cowboy, came down from Idaho to share his testimony from the stage of what Christ has done in his life.

On Saturday, the second of the three days of the event, Todd was preparing to come over to the Performing Arts Center where the Celebration was being held. As he pulled up to a stop light, he saw a man by the side of the road asking for spare change. God moved in Todd’s heart, and Todd pulled his car off to the shoulder of the road and waved the man over.

Todd invited him to the Celebration, and – after hearing what the man had to say about “those Christians” – convinced him to come along. The man quickly went off to find his brothers, and the three of them returned and climbed into the back of Todd’s car.

I had no idea that any of this was taking place while I was backstage preparing to preach on youth night. That evening, when I offered the invitation for the young people in the crowd to make a commitment to Jesus, I quickly noticed the full head of gray hair making its way down to the front.

One of the three men that Todd had picked up – nicknamed “Freebird” after the Lynyrd Skynyrd song – heard the Gospel and, there in the Terrell ISD Performing Arts Center, prayed to accept Christ as his Lord and Savior.

Afterwards he told Todd, “They call me ‘Freebird,’ but I’ve never felt free in my life until tonight.” He couldn’t believe that people loved him and hugged him even though he was wearing dirty clothes and hadn’t showered.

The next morning, as our team met for devotions in the local Holiday Inn, we rejoiced at the work that God had done in Freebird’s life. We were grateful that Todd responded when he felt God calling him to pull the car to the side of the road.

As we closed our time together, we received word that Freebird was on his way to the hotel. He had decided that – having made a commitment to follow Christ – he wanted to be baptized as well! That morning, along with Todd and our emcee Mark Christian, I had the amazing blessing of helping to baptize Freebird in the Holiday Inn swimming pool.

When we asked Freebird – whose real name we learned was Fred – if he was going to come to Sunday afternoon’s final Celebration service, he declined. “No, I’m leaving right now to head home to Alabama,” he said.  “I called my wife and told her we’re kicking this alcohol thing, and we’re getting our marriage right.”

My friends, people need the Lord! Do you have an urgency in your spirit to share Him with others? Do you want to see people find true freedom in Christ? Do you believe that eternity is at stake?

When the Holy Spirit nudged Todd to stop alongside the road, he could have easily said, “I’m going to share my faith with thousands of people this weekend. I’m doing my part. I don’t need to do this too!” And when the man by the side of the road started bad-mouthing Christians, Todd could have driven away. But, of course, he didn’t do either of those things. Because of that, Freebird’s eternity – as well as his marriage and his life here on earth – has forever changed.

How often do we watch our co-workers, family, friends, and neighbors – even the man asking for extra change on the street corner – struggle through life without sharing with them that they can have true hope for eternity? We’re always too busy, or too timid, or – frankly – too jaded to share the love and peace we’ve found. Don’t miss those opportunities!

I pray that I never forget what Freebird taught me, and I pray that you too will be challenged to truly see that people need the Lord. 

A Tribute to Ruth Bell Graham from Her Grandson Will

Will Graham, Executive Director at The Cove, the son of Franklin and Jane Graham and the grandson of Ruth and Billy Graham, penned this tribute to the enduring love between his grandparents. Five years after Ruth’s passing on June 14, 2007, we join Will in remembering this godly woman’s legacy.

It’s such a gift to have grandparents who impart profound truth without even trying, living in such a way that the lessons are impossible to ignore.

by Will Graham

“I always thought it would get easier with time, but it hasn’t. I miss her more now than
ever,” my grandfather, Billy Graham, shared as he talked about my grandmother, Ruth, who passed away in 2007. His booming voice, heard by millions around the world on TV, radio, and in person, now escapes as little more than a whisper.

Daddy Bill loves Tai Tai (the affectionate nicknames that we grandkids have for them). I guess one should probably say “loved” since she is no longer living here on earth, but that wouldn’t be accurate. He loves her with a love that cannot be destroyed by the physical separation of mortal death.

For more than 60 years as he traveled the world sharing a message of hope to the masses, she was his strength and inspiration on the home front, a practical joker who could make a princess and a beggar feel equally comfortable in the same room. He would refer to her as the greatest Christian he had ever known and comment that she knew the Bible far better than he did. She helped to prepare and equip him to go out and accomplish what he was called to do.

In my grandparent’s home, my grandmother—who had suffered years of declining health—had a room where she spent much of her time. It was where she slept and where she  studied the Bible. Several translations were spread across a large desk, all featuring big margins for taking notes. This room was also where she ultimately slipped into eternity.

My grandfather still stops as he makes his way past to look into her room, as though he might find her sitting up in bed with the mischievous grin and quick-witted comments that she carried until her final day on earth.

As he looks into that room, my grandfather still sees a simple woven wreath of Jerusalem thorns hanging on the wall amidst family photos. Directly across from it is the bed where my grandmother courageously faced the debilitating pain that followed her for years.

She would never complain about the pain, though you would occasionally see her bright eyes wince and her teeth grit. Rather than lamenting, she would point up to those thorns, similar to the sharp, long blades that were formed into the crown that Jesus wore at His crucifixion. “If He endured so much for me,” she would say, “I have nothing to complain about.”

It’s such a gift to have grandparents who impart profound truth without even trying, living in such a way that the lessons are impossible to ignore. Daddy Bill and Tai Tai have taught me so much about life, love and even pain and death, and I will be forever thankful for both of them.

Will Graham will be speaking at The Cove on June 29-July 1 in a seminar titled, When The Shadows Speak.  You can register by calling 1-800-950-2092 or visit our website by clicking here.

Billy Graham on Prayer

Billy Graham

Prayer is not using God; it is more often to get us in a position where God can use us.

I watched the deckhands on the great liner United States as they docked that ship in New York Harbor.

First, they threw out a rope to the men on the dock.

Then, inside the boat the great motors went to work and pulled on the great cable.

But of course the pier wasn’t pulled out to the ship; the ship was moved snugly up to the pier.

Prayer is the rope that pulls God and man together.

But it doesn’t pull God down to us; it pulls us up to Him.

Five Father’s Day Gifts

Father’s Day is just around the corner…

It doesn’t matter if your Dad is 35 or 75, there are certain gifts that have timeless appeal and will always be remembered.

Here are five priceless Father’s Day gift ideas, where you can’t go wrong…

 

1. A hand-written card
2. Another tie.  Seriously. One day these can be made in to a tie quilt!
3. A golf club.  Can a man ever have enough golf clubs??
4. Breakfast in bed
5. A gift certificate to The Cove

Call The Cove today at 1-800-950-2092 to give a gift with eternal impact.

Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.  James 1:17

What Does The Bible Say About Angels?

ANGELS PROTECT AND MINISTER TO GOD’S PEOPLE
See Psalm 91: 11 & 12
11 For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways.  12 In their hands they shall bear you up,  lest you dash your foot against a stone.”

Angels are mentioned throughout the Bible as protecting God’s chosen people or bringing them messages from God—appearing to Jacob (Genesis 32:1); Daniel (Daniel 6:22); Moses and the children of Israel (Numbers 20:16); Zacharias, Mary, Joseph, and the shepherds (Matthew 1: Luke 1; 2); and Philip (Acts 8:26), to mention a few.  Angels ministered to Jesus in the wilderness (Matthew 4), and angels rolled back the stone of Christ’s empty tomb (Matthew 28:2).

ANGELS GLORIFY GOD
See Revelation 5: 11, 12
11 Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne, the living creatures, and the elders; and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands, 12 saying with a loud voice: “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom, and strength and honor and glory and blessing!”

Angels sing praises to God, and they will accompany Christ when He returns to earth to set up His kingdom.  Matthew 25:31 says, “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory.”

ANGELS CHARACTERISTICS
See Isaiah 6: 2, 6
2 Above it stood seraphim; each one had six wings: with two he covered his face, with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew.  6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a live coal which he had taken with the tongs from the altar.

There are many opinions about angels and what they are like; we look to the Bible for God’s insight on His messengers.  The Bible may not tell us everything we want to know about angels; but we know God’s Word is true, and from it we can glean the following.  Some passages, as this one, describe angels as having wings (see also Daniel 9:21).  Angels are powerful holy beings (2 Peter 2:11; Luke 9:26) who do not have physical bodies as we know them.  They are usually invisible to the human eye; however, at times their appearance is glorious with the light of God surrounding them (Matthew 28:2-4).  They occasionally appear in human form (Genesis 19).  In fact, Hebrews 13:2 warns, “Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some have unwittingly entertained angels.”
In his book, Angels: God’s Secret Agents, Billy Graham said, “We may not always be aware of the presence of angels.  We can’t always predict how they will appear.  But angels have been said to be our neighbors.  Often they may be our companions without our being aware of their presence.  We know little of their constant ministry.  The Bible assures us, however, that one day our eyes will be unscaled to see and know the full extent of the attention angels have given us (1 Corinthians 13:11, 12).”

These excerpts were taken from The Billy Graham Training Center Bible.

If you are visiting The Cove before December 31, 2012, stop by Ruth’s Attic Bookstore and save $5 on the softcover, hardcover & bonded leather Billy Graham Training Center Bible and $10 on the genuine leather edition Billy Graham Training Center Bible.   Click here to print coupon.

Service, Sacrifice and Freedom

In honor of Memorial Day, we are featuring excerpts from two Billy Graham books, in which he describes the impact of his ministry to soldiers on the front lines of the Korean War.

From I Saw Your Sons at War

Seated here I can close my eyes, and for the moment shut out these familiar scenes of home.  Then I can hear again the roar of artillery…see the utter devastation of the Korean countryside…see the homeless orphan children crying for food and warmth in the chill of a Korean winter.

I can see also the American GIs standing on a snow-covered, wind-swept hillside to hear the Gospel, and then go back to the trenches…see some of those same GI’s in a front  line MASH hospital (Mobile Army Surgical Hospital), dying, and as they die,  hear them talk about home in Arkansas…Oregon…Minnesota…Vermont.

And when I open my eyes, and it hardly seems possible, for here the only planes we ever see here are friendly passenger planes, headed north to Washington…or south to Charlotte, and Atlanta.

It seems unbelievable that just weeks ago I walked amid the complete destruction which is the aftermath of a modern bombing and artillery barrage.

And though the entire trip seems so remote and far away now that I am home, I know this, that my visit to Korea was the greatest experience of my ministry. Nothing has ever made such a profound, and I pray, lasting impression on my Christian life.

From Just As I Am

My first sermon on the front lines saw me on a newly built platform graced by a painting done by a soldier forty miles away. Troops had carried the painting (which depicted Christ watching over an exhausted soldier) to us overnight, and it stood next  to me as I preached.

I did not use humor or stories to break the ice that night. I dove right into the Gospel, and
hundreds responded. I felt the Spirit of God in that meeting.

Men of every rank came forward, many in tears—and they were rough, rugged men—to receive Christ.

In a field hospital about a mile behind the front lines on Christmas Eve, we went from bed to bed, bringing greetings and trying to encourage the wounded.

One young man was so mangled that he lay face down on a canvas-and-steel contraption. A doctor whispered to me, “I doubt he’ll ever walk again.”

“Mr. Graham, can I see your face?” asked the young man. “We’ve all been praying for you and looking forward to your coming. I won’t be able to be at the service.” So I lay on the floor beneath him and looked up into his hollow eyes, still stunned with his fate. I prayed with him.

“Sir,” said the young man to General Jenkins, who was escorting me, “I fought for you, but I’ve never seen you. Could I see your face?” The general got down on all fours, slid under that bed as best he could, and talked with the young man. I saw a tear fall from the soldier onto the general’s cheek.

When we walked from the bleeding, broken dying men of that hospital into the crisp, clean, thirty-below-zero air of Christmas Eve, I felt sadder, older, and more aware of the needs and suffering not only in Asia, but also in the entire world.

Billy Graham My Answer Columns for Memorial Day

Our son is planning to enlist in the military in a few months. I know we’re supposed to
believe God will take care of him, but right now we’ve got a bad case of nerves and our fears are a lot stronger than our faith. How can we get over this?
Read Mr. Graham’s Answer »

My husband is serving with the military overseas, and I can’t begin to tell you how difficult
it’s been for our children and me. How can we get through this? I pray all the time, but it’s still very hard.
Read Mr. Graham’s Answer »

I prayed a lot while I was on duty in Iraq and I made all sorts of promises to God about the
way I’d live if He got me out of there alive. Well, He did, but I’ve been back about six months now, and I’m ashamed to say I have not followed through on my promises. How can I do better?
Read Mr. Graham’s Answer »

 

Billy Graham: A Tribute to His Mother

“Of all the people I have ever known, she had the greatest influence on me,” Billy Graham said of his mother, Morrow.

Writing in Just As I Am, Billy shared several stories that point to the important role his mother played in shaping his life.

As we prepare to honor mothers this Sunday, check out what he had to say in the autobiography and also at the May 11, 2003, San Diego Crusade.

“In many Crusades over the years,” wrote Billy, “I have devoted at least one message to the subject of the family. In my Depression-era growing-up years, I suppose we Grahams on our North Carolina dairy farm bore some resemblance to the fictional Walton family on television. It’s easy to feel nostalgic about simpler times, but they obviously were not easier times. Nor were they necessarily happier times.

“What we did have back then was family solidarity. We really cared about each other, and we liked to do things together. Jesus’ word picture of a hen gathering her brood under her wing fits my mother. She saw to it that we gathered frequently and regularly—and not just around the dinner table or in front of the radio for favorite broadcasts. She gathered us around herself and my father to listen to Bible stories, to join in family prayers, and to share a sense of the presence of God.”

On August 14, 1981, Morrow Graham quietly left this earth in her sleep and entered Heaven.

“When word came,” said Billy, “I wept and yet rejoiced at the same time. Of all the people I have ever known, she had the greatest influence on me. I am sure one reason that the Lord has directed and safeguarded me, as well as Ruth and the children, through the years was the prayers of my mother and father.”

Speaking on Mother’s Day 2003, Billy told the audience in San Diego that his mother was a farm woman. “She and my father didn’t have much education … But my mother was a woman of God. She always had devotions with us, she always prayed with us, she always loved us, and did so many things, as I look back now, out of the way. And she and my father, when I was in Bible school, they would go up to a room upstairs and kneel down every morning at 10 o’clock to pray for their son in Bible school.”

PHOTO shows Billy Graham and his mother.