We were in St. Louis. Our entire family was staying at an older Radisson hotel downtown. As I recall, we were living in Kansas City at the time. It seems like we were traveling to Alabama. As I recall, we left late one evening from Kansas City with plans to spend the night in St. Louis.
Anyway, I recall waking up very early the next morning. I slipped out of the room trying not to awaken Charlotte or my two daughters. On my way out of the room I took with me William Martin’s biography of Billy Graham, A Prophet With Honor: The Billy Graham Story. I remember sitting at a small table outside the hotel for the next few hours reading story after story of Graham’s life. I’m not sure why I remember this so clearly, but I do. I remember the coolness of the early morning, drinking coffee that someone from the hotel had made, and being absolutely mesmerized by these stories.
What impacted me so profoundly on that morning was the integrity of this man. The genuineness of this man came through in story after story. Person after person he had worked with for many years spoke of his integrity and trustworthiness. Now I’m not sure why this impacted me so strongly. I suspect some of this had to do with a few instances in which I had been disappointed by people whom I had admired and then later found out had a secret immoral lifestyle. It was not that this man was flawless. It was simply that he was authentic. That morning took place about seventeen years ago. Yet, it remains significant.
Can you recall a moment like this one in which you later realized that this was a significant marker in your faith walk? How has that moment made a difference in your life?