From the chair – A surprising number of Buncombe Republicans did something unusual today – we stood by the road. The opportunity – a final chance to honor the Reverend Billy Graham on the North Carolina leg of his journey toward Washington. It was special.
10th District GOP Secretary Patsy Gardin, Buncombe Men’s Club President Bill Gainer and myself had traveled to Lincolnton for a great 10th District Executive Committee meeting. We adjourned just in time to take up station – along with hundreds of others on Highway 321 – to await the procession.
A circling helicopter announced the arrival. From conversation and observation it was evident that those in attendance were there for one clear reason – to show their appreciation for and to Reverend Graham.
The mood was special. The First Responders covering every overpass was special. The atmosphere of reverence was special. The clear blue sky was special.
But there was one thing that was extra special – the demonstrated truth that America has a lot of people holding firmly to their foundation of faith.
That is after all, the essence of this gentleman’s mission and lingering touch. He spent his life reminding us – rewinding us – renewing us – toward America’s grounding faith.
Lest the question of “freedom of religion” come up, it helps to remember that our Founding Fathers were not talking about “freedom from religion.” Universally connected to Christianity at one level or another, they sought to uphold the sincere spirit of our faith by keeping the door open to all faiths. Unlike what one finds in so many secular countries and religious oligarchies, our Founding Fathers were not afraid of competition.
Watching Reverend Graham’s procession unfold drove that message home. Our country was founded on Christian values and dedications. There are a lot of Americans who get that and are working hard to live it and preserve it.
From conversation and contact, I’m pleased to report that a good share of those people are Republicans. Thanks again Reverend Graham, for the reminder…
“Believers, look up – take courage. The angels are nearer than you think.” Billy Graham