Posted by: Jill Potts Jones | March 29, 2010

An experience I’ll never forget–Will Graham Celebration 2010

I took the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s (BGEA) Christian Life and Witness classes because I just wanted to be a part of what was going to happen at the Will Graham Celebration this year in Auburn, AL.  I was told by those who had been a part of the planning that this would be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that I wouldn’t want to pass up.  In order to be a counselor during the Celebration, everyone was required to take two of the three classes. 

Funny thing is I never once considered it a possibility that I would actually fulfill my role as a counselor.  I thought I’d take the class just so I could say I took it and get the badge for my souvenir collection and tell everyone I had the opportunity but was too nervous to actually do it.  Isn’t it funny how God uses circumstances to put us where He wants us to be?  I had also volunteered to serve on the co-labor team, a team of volunteers who come together each evening following the Celebration to count, sort, enter data, and mail letters to inquirers.  I was chosen as a co-captain which meant I had to leave early to get started. This was going to be my excuse for not serving as a counselor.  Can you hear the conversation I had with God?  God, I’m going to be doing this important work for You so surely You will excuse me from being a counselor. 

On Friday evening, I nervously stood in the Counselor Check-In line.   I figured I could get a good seat for the concert and the message from Will Graham and leave as soon as he gave the invitation.  It wasn’t until the invitation that I realized there was no way I could get out of serving as a counselor.  The supervisor was calling me forward to stand with an inquirer.  It was at this moment I could hear God laughing uncontrollably. 

But let me tell you something.  Welcoming someone into the family of God was one of the most awesome experiences I’ve ever had.  I was afraid I wouldn’t remember what I was supposed to do, but it didn’t matter.  When the Bible says that the Holy Spirit will give you what you need WHEN you need it, that’s the truth.  I went through the steps to salvation without any problems–mainly because it was printed on a sheet for us.  But the amazing thing is that I remembered all the Bible verses we memorized in our classes. 

God sent Will Graham to  Auburn, Alabama.  But God did something even more remarkable and miraculous–He used ordinary people to share an extraordinary experience in order that the family of God could grow.  He used me and hundreds of others to share the love of Christ in a way that no one else could.  He took people of different races, ages and church denominations and brought them together the way no theology, no pastor, no human being ever could.  He did the God thing.  Our God truly is an Awesome God. 

If you do not know Jesus, let me introduce you to the best friend you will ever have in your life.  The friend that sticks closer than a brother.  He was willing to die for you.  Are you willing to live for Him?



  1. I am so very proud of you and for you. Ain’t God good? Wish I could have made it. I was very involved with my folks who lost a life-long friend of the family. Oliver is now experiencing the joy that salvation bringswith His Lord!

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