At Christmastime I took a mental trip down the road in rural Pennsylvania on which I grew up. My step-father and I went house to house and he’d either say, still there or something like they don’t live there anymore.
The Rev. Billy Graham has a physical body upon this earth, but he doesn’t live there anymore. His address has gone from the temporal to the eternal. Dr. Graham is home. And he knew his final destination.
In January 2000, leaders in Charlotte, North Carolina invited their favorite son, Billy Graham, to a luncheon given in his honor. He hesitated because of his health, but the leaders assured him, “We don’t expect a major address. Just come and let us honor you.” So he agreed.
After wonderful tributes were paid to him, Dr. Graham stepped to the microphone. He looked at the crowd and said, “I’m reminded today of Albert Einstein, the great physicist who this month has been honored by Time magazine as the Man of the Century.
“Einstein was once traveling from Princeton on a train when the conductor came down the aisle, punching the tickets of each passenger. When he came to Einstein, Einstein reached in his vest pocket. He couldn’t find his ticket, so he reached in his other pocket. It wasn’t there, so he looked in his briefcase but couldn’t find it. Then he looked in the seat by him. He couldn’t find it. The conductor said, ‘Dr. Einstein, I know who you are. We all know who you are. I’m sure you bought a ticket. Don’t worry about it.’ Einstein nodded appreciatively.
The conductor continued down the aisle punching tickets. As he was ready to move to the next car, he turned and saw the great physicist down on his hands and knees looking under his seat for his ticket. The conductor rushed back and said, ‘Dr. Einstein, Dr. Einstein, don’t worry. I know who you are. No problem. You don’t need a ticket. I’m sure you bought one.’ Einstein looked at him and said, ‘Young man, I too know who I am. What I don’t know is where I’m going.'”
Dr. Graham continued, “See the suit I’m wearing? It’s a brand new suit. My wife, my children, and my grandchildren are telling me I’ve gotten a bit slovenly in my old age. I used to be a bit more fastidious. So I went out and bought a new suit for this luncheon and one more occasion. Do you know what that occasion is? This is the suit in which I’ll be buried. But when you hear I’m dead, I don’t want you to immediately remember the suit I’m wearing. I want you to remember this: I not only know who I am, I also know where I’m going.” (from the Denison Forum newsletter)
If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll get there every time, but you’ll be lost. Modern GPS can be very helpful, but more than once the voice from my iPhone has instructed me to turn the wrong way on a one-way street. You can read self-help books, listen to gurus of all stripes and types, but they may be guiding you in the wrong direction. You’ll be lost.
Kathie Lee Gifford when she was interviewed yesterday on Megyn Kelly Today preached the gospel boldly and joyfully. She explained that she has “the cure for the malignancy of the soul, and he has a name, and it’s Jesus.”
Jesus is the cure for the lost. He is THE GPS for our souls. He came to seek and save the lost–let that sink in… The Lord God of the universe came down in the form of a man to save me and you.
If you’re reading this and don’t know Him, I encourage you to talk to a preacher today, get a Bible and read Luke chapter 15. Find out where you’re going. Learn your eternal address.