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BILLY GRAHAM AWARDED GOLDEN CONGRESSIONAL MEDAL


On Thursday May 2, 1996, Dr. Billy Graham was awarded the Golden Congressional Medal, the highest honor this country can bestow upon an individual - only 263 individuals had ever received this in the history of the United States of America. In his acceptance speech, Dr. Billy Graham said that the dilemma within each one of us is addressed by David in Psalm 23.


First, David said, is a problem of emptiness. David wrote, "The Lord in my shepherd; I shall not want." He was not talking just about physical want, but spiritual want.


I stood on the campus of one of our great universities some time ago, and I asked the Dean. "What is the greatest problem on your campus?" He replied in one word: "Emptiness." The human heart craves for meaning, and yet we live in a time of spiritual emptiness that haunts millions.


"Nirvana" is the Hindu word for someone who has arrived into the state of perpetual bliss. Media reports said that Kurt Cobain, the NIRVANA rock group's leader, was the pacesetter for the nineties, and the "savior of rock and roll." But he said the song in the end which best described his state of mind was "I hate myself and I want to die!" And at age 27 he committed suicide with a gun.


Second, is the problem of guilt. David wrote, "He restoreth my soul, He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness." Down inside we all know that we have not measured up even to our own standards, let alone God's standard.


Third, David pointed to the problem of death. "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death. I will fear no evil, for thou art with me." Death is the one common reality of all human life."


Emptiness - Guilt - Death.


(From a sermon by Emile Wolfaardt, My Soul-His Delight, 10/22/2009)

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