Throughout 2021, we’ll be honoring our local heroes by showcasing items given to Billy Graham by law enforcement, firefighters, and military personnel throughout the course of his ministry.
January 16, 1991 – Desert Storm began.
“That morning I had received an urgent phone call asking if I could come to Washington immediately and have lunch with the President.”
“It was impossible on such short notice to get from North Carolina to Washington, I replied. An hour or two later, another call arrived asking if I could come instead for dinner. No reason was given for the urgency, and I was somewhat perplexed. Rumors of an impending war in the Persian Gulf in response to Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait had been flying about for days, but I had no way of knowing if there was any connection.”
Billy Graham recalls this day in 1991 in his autobiography Just As I Am. He arrived at the White House by that evening; just in time to watch the news with Barbara Bush as Desert Storm began. President George H. W. Bush was not seeking political counsel, nor someone to confide in. Mr. Graham wrote, “I was with him as a friend and a pastor, not a political adviser.”
The next morning Billy Graham conducted a prayer service at Fort Myer for the cabinet, some congressional leaders, and hundreds of Marines. “My prayer was that the war, started the night before, would be very brief and would result in a minimum of casualties, and that afterward we would have a long period of peace in the Middle East.”
In times of crisis and hurt, the Good News of Jesus Christ was needed more than ever. The American people counted on Billy Graham to bring this Good News as a glimmer of hope to a hopeless world.
At the Seattle Crusade in April 1991, Mr. Graham was presented with the “Good News Bible” from Operation Desert Storm.
The note inside says “Thank you sir for all the years of comfort.” The Gospel message that Billy Graham preached at every Crusade was certainly a message of comfort.