Sunday, April 29, 2018

Yeah, I miss him already, but I don't have to live missin' his smart personal rules.

The Other Billy Graham Rules
He's Home Now.  Miss Him Gobs, But I Still Love Billy Graham’s Rules. 
They are so relevant for our day, and don't need to be applied weirdly. You remember how VP Pence got so mocked for applying these rules. I'm sure he applies them wisely.. that's noble.. so then he became a joke on late night TV. The world and small worldly peeps do that sort of thing -- shows us they're really good personal rules against sexual immorality and weirdness. We don't want what they have, so why do what they do? So many divorced and hurting. Go check the stats.
The rules are good for ministerial integrity inside and outside of churches, and yes, basically really good for all believers. Hey, it's about love and protecting, not legalism. Keep that in mind. 
I challenge you to be faithful in Jesus 24/7 wherever you go. Are you spiritual or carnal?.. a straightforward rep, a reborn disciple dash disciple-maker?
"Most men will proclaim each his own goodness, but who can find a faithful man?" Proverbs 20:6
That verse says these type of men are rare. Billy was faithful, a good example for us. Let's choose to be one of these kinds of people. The Lord was and is. 
We all saw what he did publicly, but what did he not do? Graham famously did not dine alone, or travel in a train car or other car alone. He didn't meet with alone, or hang long at work afterwards, or outside there afterward.. with a women who was not his wife. Dude, ladies.. his personal principles are smart for our day! I say watch your eyes, your mind, and your heart ..as well.. like he did. But why merely keep rules on the outside, but be perverse and lustful on the inside?.. that'd be super-dumb. Billy didn't do that, cuz that would lead to pain and destruction.
Billy chose to never be alone with a woman who was not his wife cuz he really loved his wife – was not alone in a vehicle alone, or in an elevator alone, or at any lunch meal alone. He believed this was a good way to help guard his marriage, and his ministry. Sure, and worked well -- helped him! And though he was a mere man not to be worshiped or palatalized (never would have wanted that), Billy simply finished well. He maintained a good testimony -- he glorified God a whole lot. Here's a few more for ya...
* Don't go visit the opposite sex at home alone, or counsel em alone, or more than once counsel em without their spouse there. Why do that?
I'm certainly no Billy Graham, but before college days in Dallas Liney and I both had secretly chosen to only go out with growing born again believers. That helped. Ya normally end up marrying etc some ya go out with. In college Liney wasn't ever allowed in my apartment with others not there, nor was I allowed in her flat alone. It our roommates were there, but got up and left, we did too with em. Right then, simple as that. It helped us cuz I'd be warm to her form otherwise and never wanted to fornicate. Felt there'd be multiple unforeseen consequences with that. And there would have been.  
* Don't lunch alone with her, you know like a secretary "to continue working" (you don't need to be working at lunch), or even stop for a woman on the roadside to give her a ride (stop to help when she's in real trouble? Sure, especially if injured, otherwise just call the police to help her).
* Don't be into kissin' people other than your wife, husband. Wat, why make it a habit, are you French? (..or say kissin' other than the Lord in worship if ya will. Psalm 2:12 says, "Kiss his son.." That's indeed good -- He is your first love). In this day and age, I should also say this to be clear.. not even kissin' a guy, dudes.
* Don't share or discuss sexual details with the opposite sex or any of your marital problems with one of the opposite sex. Liney and I when single, would pause and pray before going out for dinner--was good. God would so bless our fellowship and time with friends. But some ministers foolishly pray all alone or long with other that their spouse. Why not women just pray with women or with a group, and men with men?
I say avoid all flirting (with your words eyes, touch, texts, pics, emails--keep your hands to yourself when with others. It's good for a man not to touch a woman..unless she's your wife). So don't rush things. Avoid flirting, and avoid what could be perceived as that or more than that.
Avoid working late or hanging out at work afterward with the opposite sex. Invite em first. When they invite you to a bar after, take a group to a restaurant instead.
Brag on Christ and her -- convey your love for your wife and family members. Love your wife enough to lead well..biblically. Always be lookin' out for integrity. I hope I don't miss some of his, but here's some other rules
* Operate with financial transparency.

* Avoid even the appearance of sexual immorality.

* Avoid criticizing other pastors and churches.

* Be painstakingly honest in all publicity.
In Proverbs 4:23 we are advised to “guard our hearts..” and isn't that really were it all starts?
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