15 Leadership Lessons From The Billy Graham Library

A Journey of Faith

This is a post I feel completely inadequate to writeBilly Graham is one of the most influential and impactful Christians who has ever lived.  So much has been written about this great man and his life that I don’t exactly know what I could add.

However, today I had the privilege of touring The Billy Graham Library in Charlotte, NC.  It is an experience I’ll always remember and that I cannot recommend enough.  I think if I went back a dozen times I would take away different ideas with each visit. 

With that being said, here are some of my thoughts from today:

  1. Great leaders have a singular focus.  While he had offers from Hollywood and United States presidents, Mr. Graham wanted to spend each breath of his life telling people about Jesus.
  2. Great leaders who are completely sold out to a cause can change the world.
  3. Many great leaders come from humble beginnings.  Mr. Graham grew up on a dairy farm.
  4. Great leaders need a great team to accomplish great things.  The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association was started in 1950 by Mr. Graham and a handful of his closest friends.
  5. Great leaders build lasting organizations.
  6. Great leaders understand preparation.  Ruth Bell, Mr. Graham’s wife, grew up in what is now North Korea as the child of a missionary.  She dreamed of returning to Tibet as a missionary herself.  Little did she know, she was being prepared and equipped to support the man who would take the Gospel to the uttermost regions of the earth.  You never know what God is preparing you to do.
  7. Great leaders are on the leading edge of technology.  With television beginning to impact American culture in the 1950s, Mr. Graham utilized this medium to expand his influence and message.  Church leaders, can you say “Holographic Technology“?  Why multi-site or have a video venue on dvd when an image of the person can actually be on-site at your meeting or event?
  8. Great leaders build bridges with people of different ideological views.  I was amazed as I watched video of Mr. Graham share the gospel message with Woody Allen, Phil Donahue, and Larry King.  Leaders, are you developing friendships with people outside your homogenous circles?
  9. Great Christian leaders enjoy the favor of God and people.
  10. Great leaders draw great crowds.  That’s the power of influence.
  11. Great leaders, the ones worth following, have great integrity. 
  12. Great leaders embrace a successful routine.
  13. Great leaders have many people who finish the journey with them.
  14. Great leaders are respected by those closest to them, their family.
  15. I think we will be very surprised at who all is in Heaven when we get there.  When you look at the variety of friends Billy Graham had, I’m sure many of them became Christians.

Once again, it was a memorable day and I will be returning in the future.  Maybe I’ll see you there.

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About Brian Dodd on Leadership

I am a church stewardship and leadership consultant for INJOY Stewardship Solutions. This blog combines my personal passions of church, sports, pop culture and family into a single leadership resource. I trust your time on this site will create conversations and add value to your life.


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