|Billy Graham's home, just as it was. Building on left.|
The Billy Graham Library
by Linore Rose Burkard
First you tour the modest home Mr. Graham grew up in, replete with original furnishings and wallpaper, right down to several thousand bricks--which is remarkable considering that the house has been transplanted to this site from miles away where Mr. Graham grew up. (How they do that, I'll never fathom!)
Even before entering the home, visitors are greeted outdoors with lovely hymns, as if an angel choir is hovering about somewhere. It turns out that the music is wafting out of hidden speakers, and these are scattered about the walking paths so that one is never too far away from the peaceful, happy sounds. On a beautiful day, you might think you're on heavenly grounds!
As you enter the house, it is immediately apparent that Mrs. Graham (not Ruth Bell Graham, Billy's wife, but his mother) had an eye for tasteful decor. I couldn't help snapping photos as we moved along.
|Victorian Lady. (from the Billy Graham Homestead)|
|Dining Room of the Graham Homestead|
|Right Wall in Dining Room|
|Victorian Vignettes (Not the best picture, unfortunately)|
|Georgian Vignette. I could not get this photo without the reflection, much as I tried.|
Once you listen to an animatronic cow give you a little amusing introduction, you follow a mostly self-guided tour from room to room. "Self-guided," because no one rushes you, but there is a presentation or short film in most every room, so that, even though no one is moving you along, the tour goes in order of Mr. Graham's life, and you learn, not only about him and where he traveled to preach the Word of God--these things seem almost incidental--but about the various countries he went to. There is political, social, and spiritual information, so you don't feel as though it is all about him. Instead, it is a great testimony of what God does with a willing soul, and even a history lesson for anyone willing to listen, read, and learn.
Exhibits range from written paraphernalia, pictures, films, recorded excerpts, artwork, and a couple rooms full of personal artifacts, letters, and other things of interest. I don't think I spent a boring moment. Then, at the very end of the tour, we went through a wonderful doorway, which (if I remember correctly) is meant to represent the door we all hope to pass through one day--the gateway to heaven. (See below.) It is actually like going through a short tunnel--fun!
|At the end: The Gateway. " "I am the way, the truth, and the light. No one comes to the Father except through Me."|
For more information on the Billy Graham Library, hours of operation, and more, see the website HERE.
Linore Rose Burkard is best known for historical romance novels with Harvest House Publishers, and now writes YA/Suspense as L.R.Burkard. Linore teaches workshops for writers with Greater Harvest Workshops in Ohio, is a mother of five, and still homeschools her youngest daughter—preferably with coffee in one hand, iPad in the other, and her feet up. Keep up with Linore by subscribing at either of her websites.