Grace Makes the Difference
1 Corinthian 15:9-11
The great Evangelist Reverend Billy Graham was driving through a small town (it was in the very early years of his evangelistic preaching; he was not very recognizable by the masses at this time). Apparently, young Graham was driving too fast, and he was stopped by the local police and given a speeding ticket (this officer had no clue that he was preaching a revival very close to this town or who he was). Reverend Graham admitted his guilt and made no excuses, but the officer for some reason told him that he would have to pay the fine in the local court house.
Reverend Graham went to the courthouse and stood before the magistrate, and he asked him if he was guilty or not guilty of speeding? Graham pleaded guilty. The magistrate had a starring look on his face, and he looked at the name and then looked again at the face. The judge said, ''It would be 20 dollars for the fine sir, a dollar for every mile you went over the limit.'' This judged recognized him as the young Reverend Billy Graham (and acknowledged him), as a matter of fact, this very judge had come to know Christ from some small crusade that Graham had led a couple years earlier in the adjacent area. He said you have violated the law sir, the fine must be paid. And then, the unthinkable happened. The judge stood up from his chair and reached in his pocket, and took out a twenty dollar bill, attached it to the ticket, and paid the penalty for him. And then took Graham out and bought him a steak dinner! Reverend Billy Graham said years later about that experience, ''Wow,'' that was grace that is how God treats repentant sinners!!! Guilty! But Grace! Convicted, But Grace, Wrong, but grace! Imperfect; but Grace! Stumbling; but Grace! Wounded; but Grace! Shame; but Grace! Life stained and soiled; but Grace! God took the ticket that we owed, paid it out of his pocket, and applied his grace to us, and then took us out to dinner! And he has been ...
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