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Christian evangelist the Rev. Billy Graham died Feb. 21. He wrote several weeks worth of columns before his death. The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette will continue to run his words in this space through his final column, which will run March 20.

DEAR REV. GRAHAM: All my children have messed-up lives -- multiple divorces, illegitimate children, alcohol, drugs, you name it. I can't blame anyone but myself, because I was a lousy mother. Two years ago, however, I found Jesus, and my life has turned around. Will God ever forgive me for those lost years? I don't see how He can.

-- R.McL.

DEAR R.McL.: One of the Bible's greatest truths is that when we come to Christ and trust Him alone for our salvation, God forgives us of every sin we have ever committed -- completely and totally. It's as if every sin you ever committed were listed on a chalkboard -- and Jesus stepped up and erased them all!

Don't, therefore, be bound by the past or filled any longer with doubt or guilt. When Jesus Christ -- the sinless Son of God -- died on the cross, all our sins were transferred to Him, and He took upon Himself the judgment and Hell that you and I deserve. Why not pause right now and thank Him for loving you and forgiving you -- totally and completely? The Bible says, "In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins" (Ephesians 1:7).

Thank God too for changing your life -- and if God can do it for you, He also can do it for your children. You don't indicate in your letter if you have any meaningful contact with them -- but even if you don't, pray for them, and ask God to give you an opportunity to let them know you regret the past.

Most of all, encourage them to turn to Christ for the forgiveness and new life they need -- just as you have. Listen: God is in the business of mending broken lives! Only Christ can "open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God" (Acts 26:18).

Write to Billy Graham in care of Billy Graham Evangenlistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201 or visit the website at

billygraham.org

Style on 03/13/2018

Print Headline: On Christianity

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