Nearly 300 year-round volunteers support the Billy Graham Library. Today we are sharing a guest post from volunteer Chuck Starr.
As volunteers at the Billy Graham Library we are given the awesome privilege of interacting with people from every tribe, tongue, and nation. Daily we experience Divine appointments to share God’s love with those who both intentionally come to the Library and with those who “just happened to be in the neighborhood” and thought they’d check us out.
Some of our greatest moments of service come while just trying to make our guests feel welcome. It could be while meeting in the Prayer Room with a newlywed couple from Burma, out in the Homeplace listening to a group of Chinese college students share their concern for their country or even just for a brief moment when we welcome a first-time guest from right here in Charlotte as they enter through the Foot of the Cross. Even while on break we connect with people in conversations that almost always end up with a short prayer of encouragement—something everyone needs now and then.
Prayer is the heartbeat of the Library. One of my most memorable moments took place while talking with a family from Utah while I served in the Homeplace. The dad pastors a small Baptist church near Provo. Having lived in Utah earlier in my life I knew of the religious opposition this pastor and family faced on a daily basis. They came to the Library hoping to gain encouragement and new inspiration in their personal journeys. Before they left the Homeplace I prayed for this family of six, asking that the Lord would give them strength, flood them with His peace, and bring victory to their ministry among a lost and confused people. As they left the Home, I heard the wife say softly to her husband, “That was special. I didn’t expect that.”
Serving as a volunteer at the Library is unquestionably the best part of my personal journey of faith. Telling people how much God loves them, having conversations of eternal value, and encouraging them in their walk with Him are all a part of a normal day at the Library. It’s a blessing to us as we serve to glorify our Lord Jesus.
Listening to our guests’ personal stories from far away places blesses each of us and reminds me of Proverbs 25:25, “Like cold water to a weary soul, so is good news from a distant land.” The benefits of serving as a volunteer at the Library are rarely tangible. They almost always appear as blessings through these encounters with our guests. I believe that when we treasure God’s Word in our heart, that Word comes from both the Bible and from other believers when they share their journey with us.
At the end of each shift, I leave the Library knowing that something special just took place. It’s almost like the Lord gives us a little glimpse into what it will be like when we enter His presence to continue our journey on the other side of eternity.