November 8, 2013
By Joy Allmond
Over the course of this weekend, many people will go to special My Hope with Billy Graham viewing events hosted by a church, some friends or a family member.
But others will watch alone on the television in their home or online. If they have questions, or need to speak with someone about knowing Christ, where do they turn?
When these people call a telephone number given on the television screen or online—hoping for answers to their spiritual questions—they may reach a Billy Graham Evangelistic Association employee or volunteer. Both the BGEA headquarters and all 40 TVTM call centers along with one at Samaritan’s Purse are working overtime this weekend. Students at Liberty University are also answering phones in Lynchburg, Va.
But, they also may be routed to a Focus on the Family employee donating some after-hours time. Or a volunteer with the Southern Baptist Convention’s North American Mission Board (NAMB).
“We are delighted to play a role in the My Hope project,” said Dr. Ravi, evangelism response center coordinator for NAMB. “We have enjoyed a long-standing relationship with BGEA and there is no greater joy than for us to know that we are playing a part in introducing people to Jesus.”
He continued, “Our SBC churches and volunteers have been looking forward to this special ministry time. Our volunteers have been preparing and praying that God would use them in this effort to expand His Kingdom greatly.”
Angie Watkins, a senior manager with Focus on the Family, is also excited to join this massive outreach effort: “We are so thankful to be a part of this historical event!”
Here are just a few of the stories relayed from Focus on the Family and NAMB volunteers.
Prayers Come to Fruition
An 18-year-old young man called and said he wanted to give his life to Christ. He mentioned that his grandmother had been praying for him to accept Christ all of his life. He was going to call her right away to let her know her prayers were answered.
Never Give Up Praying
Another volunteer took a call from a woman who lost her husband of 45 years. He was a Christian, but she had not surrendered her life to Christ. Still, he never gave up praying for her. That woman prayed over the phone with the volunteer, and now she has hope she will see her husband again someday.
A hard-hearted 16-year-old boy called and was routed to the Focus on the Family office. He explained to the volunteer that he has never believed in God. He saw a portion of “The Cross,” and said he didn’t even know why he called.
As it turned out, he has a brother who has been sharing the Gospel with him for quite some time. After a lengthy discussion with the volunteer, he said, “I’m scared of life without God.” He then proceeded to pray and began a new life in Christ.
“The volunteer was happy to tell him that he doesn’t need to ever be fearful again,” said Watkins. “He seemed very anxious to receive the material that will be sent. He was also thrilled to be able to tell his brother what happened to him.”
A Close Call
A broken woman from Texas, named Sherry, called for counseling and prayer. She was raised in the church and came from a wonderful Christian home. She was even a Bible teacher. Having suffered through divorce, the death of a son-in-law, and her son’s drug addiction, she decided she had enough. She planned to end her life.
Sherry stumbled upon “The Cross,” unaware that it was airing tonight. She called and was about to hang up the phone when she heard a voice on the other end of the line. After talking with the volunteer, she understood what was missing all her life—a relationship with Christ.
She is thankful for the work that was done for her on the cross: “I am overwhelmed that God would care so much for me, to cleanse me from the past and make me new.”
Sherry looks forward to sharing Christ with her family this Thanksgiving.
For local and national TV listings of My Hope’s “The Cross,” click here.