I preached in a pastor's conference in New Mexico and it was incredibly exciting. On the flight there, I was privileged to meet Anne Graham Lotz-Billy Graham's daughter. She was speaking at the same conference. We talked for quite a while and I was very moved by our discussion. Talking to her was exactly like talking to her father. Their demeanor and mannerisms are so alike. I told her about meeting and praying with her father in a crusade in Philadelphia several years ago where I was invited to spend time with his organization. Everything she said seemed to ooze with anointing and I thought as she talked that her words did not come from her mouth but from somewhere deep in her heart or soul.
I have met so many people that I seldom get impressed with anyone, but Anne impressed me big time. I sensed while we talked that she knew Jesus in a way that I didn't. Twice I walked away-to go back to my seat- but I kept feeling compelled to go back to where she was. The last time, I dialed Missy's cell number and then handed the phone to Anne and said "Will you visit with my wife"? Anne never skipped a beat as she graciously talked to Missy about our children, seemingly unmoved by my childish behavior. I wasn't acting like a rock star groupie or anything but it was apparent that I felt a strong connection to her in lieu of my great love and respect for her father and her. I knew as she talked to Missy about watching the kids while I was gone that Anne was trying to send a message about Missy's role as a mother being so important. Of all people, she would understand the challenges of a mother married to a traveling evangelist.
I couldn't wait to hear her speak! She called down the thunder on a room full of pastors from all over New Mexico. She told us to get right with God and repent of our sin as well as asking those who felt God's conviction to stand up for prayer. The answer to your question is -"Yes" - I did stand.
She was "by far" the best speaker of the whole conference. I knew that my preaching paled in comparison to her's and I didn't feel as though I connected very well. I was disappointed with myself!!!
When I finished my last sermon I sat down and realized that for the first time in my life I had preached a whole sermon with my zipper completely undone. What a great way to make an impression on a room full of pastors that you're hoping might invite you to their city!!! Thank God my underwear was the same color as my suit.
Hopefully, they didn't notice!!!
One more thing!! Eugene and I went to a steakhouse to eat lunch and he talked with the waitress about knowing Christ. I was unaware of this and interrupted the conversation when I got back to the table by complaining about my chicken fried steak being so tough. Later, Eugene updated me on their conversation and I felt terrible. When she came back to the table I was able to share my testimony and her eyes began to tear. She wanted to pray and accept Christ right there in the busy restaurant. I peeked during our prayer and was shocked when I saw her kneeling on the floor. I mean this was a fancy restaurant during midday lunch with businessmen everywhere. On her own initiative, she had bowed on her knees because she was hungry to know Christ.
It's amazing how willing we all can be, to lay aside our pride when we get desperate for God!!