A young boy wants to go to the circus, but after working long hours and extra jobs his father can afford only one ticket. The boy goes to Main Street and sees the elephants, tigers and clowns on parade. The boy is amazed.
And as a man walks by and puts out his hand, the boy assumes he wants the ticket. He runs home to tell his father all that he has seen, but his father explains that he only saw the parade on Main Street. The little boy had not gone into the big tent to see the circus.
“I wonder how many of you are just standing on Main Street watching the parade go by and never go into the tent,” Anne Graham Lotz said last Thursday morning during the Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast.
Lotz, Billy Graham’s daughter, shared a story of purpose and hope to a full Christian Life Center at First Baptist Church of Garner.
She compared the father’s sacrifice for the circus ticket to that of God when he gave his son. He gave up so much and many still hesitate to enjoy all that he offers.
Lotz said that while many outwardly appear to be Christians, it’s the inward, personal relationship that matters.
“God doesn’t have any grandchildren,” she said. “Just because I’m Billy Graham’s daughter doesn’t make me a Christian.
“Make sure that you’ve entered that tent and that you’ve entered into a relationship in God’s perspective.”
The relationship is a personal, permanent and privileged one, she explained.
“Death is just when you step from faith to sight,” Lotz said.
Fear keeps many from experiencing a relationship with God, according to Lotz. Some fear death, but she compared life to Westminster Abbey in London.
“This life is like the foyer,” she said.
Becoming a Christian is like buying a ticket and the Bible is the guidebook; it’s all preparation for something better.
“Who wants to stay in the foyer when we can step into the sanctuary,” she asked.
But, Lotz said to the Garner residents, while in this lifetime, they can build on that personal relationship, learning God’s wisdom and peace when there are tough decisions to make and obstacles. He’s right there to help.
“God is a gentleman,” she said. “You can take him at his word.”
Contact Kelly Griffith at email@example.com or 919-552-5675.