Mourners chat at the start of the funeral service for U.S. evangelist Billy Graham at the Billy Graham Library in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Mourners chat at the start of the funeral service for U.S. evangelist Billy Graham at the Billy Graham Library in Charlotte, North Carolina. (REUTERS/Jonathan Drake)

The Billy Graham memorial service was "the great equalizer." It did not matter the size of your ministry or the name recognition you might have; everyone had to get on a shuttle bus a hotel or in the parking lot of Operation Christmas Child. There were no assigned seats based upon "big shots" or "little shots."

The same pulpit that was used by Dr. Graham all over the world was the same used at his funeral.

Then, when the historic service was over, everyone had to get back on the shuttle buses in order to get to their car or dropped off at the hotel. I rode on a bus to the service with Max Lucado and Peter Lowe and returned with Dick Eastman and Leonard Sweet, to the parking lot of Operation Christmas Child.

Those who walked into the memorial service tent would see leading lights like Ed Young, Joel Osteen, Paul Crouch, David Jeremiah, Dick Eastman, John Hagee, Max Lucado, James Dobson, Peter Lowe, James Merritt, Ronnie Floyd, Andy Stanley, Leonard Sweet, Kenneth Ulmer, Elmer Towns and more. Yet, everyone arrived the same way and left the same way. It epitomizes the truth that all of us came into this world the same way and all of us will leave the same way.

There was a spirit of honor and reverence throughout the entire audience. The repeated phrase I heard was this: "I was just honored to be invited by the Graham family." We felt the Holy Spirit's power throughout the celebration service, especially during the presentations of Anne Graham Lotz and Franklin Graham.

You could especially sense the Holy Speaking when Ms. Lotz spoke of the providential time of her father's passing for the United States and the world. When Franklin Graham presented the gospel, the Holy Spirit confirmed in the heart of the listeners that "this was from the Lord."  This was powerfully pungent when Franklin ask the question, "If this was your funeral, would you be in heaven?"  The audience groaned at this personal question.

On March 2, 2018, the Billy Graham memorial service was "the global crossroads of Christianity."  I was honored and grateful to be one of those Christ-followers who received an invitation from the Graham family.

Dr. James O. Davis is founder of Cutting Edge International and the CoFounder of Billion Soul Network. The Billion Soul Network is a growing coalition of more than 2,000 Christian ministries and denominations synergizing their efforts together to build the premier community of pastors worldwide to help plant five million new churches for a billion-soul harvest. Cutting Edge International and Billion Soul Network, consist of more than 500,000 churches.

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