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Anne Graham Lotz: Spiritual Lessons from COVID-19

IS THERE A BLESSING IN THE CORONAVIRUS?

“I am going to come to you in a dense cloud, so that the people will hear Me speaking … then the Bible goes on to describe … thunder and lightning flashes and a thick cloud.” (Exodus 19:9, 16,18)  The people were terrified!  But Moses encouraged them.  Do not be afraid; for God has come in order to test you, and in order that the fear of Him may remain with you, so that you may not sin. The people looked, and there was the glory of the Lord appearing in the cloud.  (Exodus 16:10)  

Anne has experienced her own “dense cloud” in the last several years with the sudden death of her beloved husband of nearly 50 years, Danny, followed by the death of her world-renowned, cherished father, Reverend Billy Graham, and lastly, in an exhausting battle with cancer.  Despite the deep sorrow and pain, she testifies, “I never once lost my joy, or my inner peace, or the steadfast hope that God was in control and would work out all things for my good.  I have ‘seen’ His glory… His character in the dark cloud.”   

Applying what she learned in the “dark” to the current pandemic, Anne postulates, “Could it be that God is using the coronavirus to get our attention so that we will listen to His message?  This is what the Lord says: ‘When I shut up the heavens so there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land, or send a plague among My people, if My people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.’”  She  boldly exhorts believers to seek the Lord:  “It’s time to pray!  It’s time to turn from our sin, self-centeredness, and secularism, and turn to God in faith and trust.  Now.  Could the silver lining in the black cloud of the coronavirus be this?  That it causes America to look up and listen to what God has to say, and therefore becomes the trigger for a national spiritual revival?  May it be so!  Let’s pull out all the stops as we tell others that it’s possible to have peace in the midst of the storm and confident hope for tomorrow, claiming, Jesus’ promise: ‘Surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.’”  

WHY SHE WROTE JESUS IN ME 

The Holy Spirit has been the subject of countless books, and Anne makes no claim to attempting a definitive work, or to exploring all the ways He is understood or misunderstood.  In fact, she admits she didn’t understand who He was when she was growing up.  Terms like “The Holy Ghost” made Him seem spooky and unknowable.  Anne’s goal is to help others know that He will be their constant companion through every life experience, leading them to love and rely on Him more.  She says she’s never leaned on Him more than in the perplexing trials of recent years.  Anne believes the Holy Spirit is the least understood member of the Trinity, often thought of as a mysterious extra, or “a magic genie, a flame of fire, or a vague feeling.”   Looking to God’s Word, Anne clearly explains His person, power, and roles.  She also points out that His presence is an antidote to loneliness, which affects 22% of Americans, and is epidemic amongst the millennial generation -- despite being so technologically “connected.”  In her own experience, she found adjusting to life without her husband to be monumental, even with the help of loving friends and her children, one of whom moved in with her for a year. Today Anne says that while she’s alone, she’s not lonely, having learned to take the Holy Spirit at His Word.  

EXPERIENCING THE HOLY SPIRIT

Anne writes at length about specific responses to the Holy Spirit that will help believers love Him more:  

  • Loving Him as a Person, and finding He is our Helper, comforter, advocate, intercessor, counselor, strength, and standby  
  • Enjoying His presence in eternity, history, and humanity  
  • Relying on His power to transform, to transform you, and transform others       
  • Embracing His purpose as He quickens, guides, ignites, shapes, and equips us
  • Living by His precepts, which are true and trustworthy 
  • Reflecting on His purity, exemplified in Jesus, and beautified and magnified in us
  • Trusting in His providence, including His pledge, seal, understanding, and prayers 

For Christians to know and love the Holy Spirit is vital, Anne believes, if they are to have the deepest intimacy there is, and to receive the love, guidance, and comfort they need.  “One thing I know for certain:  He is not an optional extra in my Christian life.  He is a divine necessity,” she states emphatically.

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Guest Info

Credits

Best-selling author, latest book, Jesus In Me (Multnomah, 2019)

Founder, AnGeL Ministries

Past Chairman of the National Day of Prayer Task Force

Launched Just Give Me Jesus women’s revivals in 2000, which have been held in more than 30 cities in 12 different countries with hundreds of thousands of attendees

Featured on 60 Minutes, The Washington Post, Fox News, and many more

Called the “best preacher in the family” by her father, Billy Graham

Married 49 years to the late Dr. Danny Lotz, three grown children and three grandchildren.

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