Traveling on Faith to Christmas at the Library
December 20, 2021
Categories: BGEA Ministry, Billy Graham, Christmas
Categories: BGEA Ministry, Billy Graham, Christmas
Pam Boston lives just outside Cleveland, Ohio. She often traveled to Florida and took Interstate 77 which runs right through Charlotte, North Carolina. During her travels, she would stop at the Billy Graham Library.
Back in October, she brought a group to an event at the Billy Graham Library with Anne Graham Lotz. “I thought at that time, Christmas at the Library must be beautiful, but I thought nothing of it,” Pam shared.
She had never been to Christmas at the Library before, but when she saw a post on social media several days later that the Library was in need of volunteers, she sensed the Holy Spirit urging her to go. That was on Oct. 18. The next day she talked to her mentor about it, and suddenly found herself applying. But there was one catch that was extremely important to Boston – she wanted to work EVERY NIGHT at Christmas at the Library. Christmas at the Library runs from Nov. 29–Dec. 23.
Once accepted – there was another hurdle. She didn’t know where she was going to stay for that period of time and how she was going to pay for it all. ”‘Ok, Lord. I’ve done this before.’ I’ve stepped out in faith before and He’s always supplied,” Pam explained.
Someone suggested she send out a newsletter and ask for donations. At first, she thought that was crazy, but decided to send a short email to select friends and prayer partners and see what God would do. “I just sensed God saying, ‘You just keep on the plan and I’ll take care of everything.’” Pam said.
God did take care of everything. Twenty-five people donated amounts that ranged from $40 to $1,000 and God went exceedingly and abundantly above all things. “One lady responded, ‘I just want to be a part of this.’ Another person shared, ‘We are experiencing Christmas at the Library through you. Thank you.’”
Why do this?
Why would someone travel over 10 hours to volunteer for a month to an event they’ve never been to before? For Pam Boston the answer is simple. “Why not just say thank you to an organization that has meant a lot to my family.”
One of George Beverly Shea’s brothers was a neighbor to Pam’s dad, Charles, when he was a boy. The Shea family would often minister to Charles and invite him to church. Through the Shea family, Charles came to know Christ. Years later, Pam’s father, Charles became a pastor and was friends with George Beverly Shea’s sister, Mary. Pam vividly remembers how “Mother Shea” would often come to Pam’s house and play the piano. “I credit the Shea family for sharing the Gospel with their neighbors, which was my dad,” Pam said.
Later on, when Pam went to graduate school at Wheaton College she recalls the time she met Billy Graham. The graduate students were called into the chapel to hear Billy Graham preach, and Pam ended up sitting near Mr. Graham. “I wanted his autograph and thought, all he could say is no. So I just tapped him and said, ‘May I have your autograph?’ ‘Why certainly,’ he said.” Pam shares she will never forget that moment and has treasured it.
Pam has treasured every moment volunteering at Christmas at the Library. She has done every role, from working the dairy bar, to helping people at the carriage rides, to story hour to being a shepherd in the Live Nativity. She’s also had some incredible God surprises along the way – even in the restroom. “I heard someone say hi to me as I stood by the sink. I looked up and I immediately recognized her,” Pam said. It was Cissie Graham Lynch, the daughter of Franklin Graham and granddaughter of Billy Graham. “Cissie’s fun spirit pops on Instagram! I appreciate her heart for God, her visible participation with Samaritan’s Purse, (especially her involvement with Operation Heal Our Patriots). Not too many women know how to fish and hike with a gun strapped to them!” Pam shared.
That fun spirit continued as they met later on that night by the Dairy Bar and Boston couldn’t believe Cissie had remembered her name. “I love her warmth, friendliness, high energy and directness,” Pam said.
Pam never imagined on this journey she would get to thank the Grahams personally and meet one of the Sheas. She was just trying to be obedient and follow God’s plan. But God had another surprise in store. George Beverly Shea’s son, Ron, has worked at the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association for 40 years. When he found out about Pam’s story, he couldn’t wait to meet her. The same held true for Pam. “It mattered to me that he know the significance his family had on our extended family. We’re Christians today because of his uncle’s invitation to attend church. Meeting Ron brought it full circle,” Pam said.
Pam Boston will head back to Ohio Christmas Eve. She has so many wonderful memories and lessons of faith that she’s taking with her. So what’s next? Pam says she doesn’t know, but she’s praying about what her next assignment will be. One thing is certain – this whole experience boosted her faith. “That’s the way I’ve lived my whole life. We just follow God….We don’t know what surprises are ahead of us if we say yes to the Lord.” Pam said.
She knows she’ll be back to Christmas at the Library and she can’t wait to share with everyone what happened during her trip. It reminded her of what Luke shared in the Bible. After Jesus ascended to heaven, the disciples worshiped Him and returned to Jerusalem with great joy. (Luke 24:52) So too, Pam knows she will return to Ohio filled with great joy and praising God for all He has done.