In our ever-changing world, people are losing sight of the power of prayer. Billy Graham once said, “Remember that God helps us when we pray. … This is a mystery we will never fully understand this side of heaven but it also is a great comfort.”
The Bible says in Philippians 4:4-7, “Rejoice in the Lord always. … In everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And by the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
In this exhibit, you will get a closer look at teachings and examples of prayer from the Bible as well as Mr. Graham and the Billy Graham Crusade Team, and how prayer was and is the key component of BGEA’s ministry.
“Prayer is simply talking to God,” said Billy Graham in Rooted in Prayer: A Personal Prayer Journal. “The most important thing I can say about this is that God wants you to talk to Him.”
“From his humble beginnings on a dairy farm, to the national stage praying with presidents and world leaders, Billy Graham was often noted as saying the three most important things to do were, ‘Pray, Pray, Pray,’” said Tom Phillips, vice president of the Billy Graham Library. “Prayer has been, is, and will continue to be the most integral element of Mr. Graham's ministry. In this exhibit, visitors can see how God was woven into every piece of the ministry from staff prayer time and international Crusades, to the Grahams' daily devotion time spent focusing on God’s Word as a family.”
For more than 70 years, Billy and Ruth Graham, Franklin Graham, and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) made certain that prayer was included in every element of their ministry. In this exhibit, visitors can see memorabilia from historic events including Billy’s personal diary used during the 1957 New York Crusade; a clock and watch used by the Grahams in Amsterdam in 1986; a lanyard, program and a copy of the prayer given by Graham at the Indianapolis 500 in 1999; Billy’s sermon notes from the National Day of Prayer and Remembrance following 9/11; prayer cards, brochures and letters from multiple Crusades; photos and more.
Special resources available to visitors include brochures on how to pray for friends and loved ones and “praying on the spot” – a method used throughout the years by Billy Graham and original members of the BGEA Crusade team that placed sticker dots on watches, toothbrushes, mirrors and anywhere they would see it often to remind themselves every time that they saw the dot to stop and pray.
Today, BGEA relies on prayer.
• Billy Graham Library volunteers are available to pray with guests, and a room is set aside specifically to allow visitors a quiet place to spend time in prayer.
• Billy Graham Rapid Response Team chaplains are trained to respond in the aftermath of disasters to minister and pray with those affected by tragedy.
• My Hope America with Billy Graham encourages people to pray for their friends, family, neighbors and colleagues.
• Franklin Graham Festivals and Will Graham Celebrations have teams who spend months praying for the cities, communities and people involved with those events.
The “Rooted in Prayer” exhibit runs through the end of June. Admission to this exhibit and admission to the Billy Graham Library is free.