A few days ago my co-worker and friend, Reed Swindle and I had the opportunity to visit with brother George Bailey. Brother Bailey is one of the great preachers of our generation. He has spoken around the world twice, and has preached in numerous Gospel meetings, as well as many evangelistic campaigns. He is more than just the consummate preacher’s preacher (all the preachers who read this blog will understand that reference!). He is a wonderful man of God. He is a great encouragement to preachers, as well as to everyone who knows him.
One of the highlights of my personal life during the past few years is the blessing of becoming very close to brother and sister Bailey. Laura and I have spent a lot of time with them in recent years. One of the favorite memories of our lives is the week we spent with the Bailey’s in California. We have shared many meals with them and many wonderful conversations. I visit with him every week that I am home
Brother Bailey has had a difficult year. He endured open-heart surgery in addition to another surgery and has spent quite a bit of time in the hospital. He is feeling some better now and is in rehab. I know that many of you who read this blog pray for him regularly and are very interested in how he is doing. I also know that he appreciates deeply every prayer and every expression of concern for him. In our visit last week he said, “I am getting better and when I get out of rehab we will go have lunch and talk about the Holy Land Tour!”
Please pardon the last couple of paragraphs. That is really not what this post is about, but so many of you have asked about brother Bailey and I wanted to let you all know how he’s doing. So, here is what this post is about. During our recent visit brother Bailey was talking about how he hated that he could not be at this year’s PTP.
Reed asked him if he would tell us what he had intended on talking about at PTP. And he did! It was almost like he was preaching a sermon to preachers, and boy did I need to hear this sermon!! I pulled out my handy I-Phone, pulled up the “Voice Memo’s App,” and begin recording. He said he wanted to discuss how we as preachers could help create a better world. Here are the points that brother Bailey said he had planned to use in his lesson.
WE NEED A WORLD FIT TO LIVE IN.
WE NEED A SELF FIT TO LIVE WITH.
WE NEED A GOAL FIT TO LIVE FOR.
WE NEED AN EXAMPLE FIT TO LIVE BY.
As we preachers are prone to say, “Now that will preach!” You’ll have to add your own scripture references and illustrations, but hey, you don’t have to find a poem since it has four points:)!! When Jesus came into our world He made everyone and everything around Him better. He went about doing good (Acts 10:38). He came to bring others an "abundant life." (John 10:10) Jesus was always concerned about others more than He was Himself (Philippians 2:5-9).
Then, as brother Bailey always does, he deflected the spotlight away from himself and asked me, “So what did you preach on Sunday?” I pray every day that when I grow up I will not only be able to preach like brother Bailey, I hope I can be like him! He is a model for all of us who are attempting to proclaim the unsearchable riches of Christ, and during his life he has helped create a better world.
Dear Father, please help all of us to do everything that we can to make our world a better place to live. Thank you dear God, for men like brother George Bailey and others like him who have made our world better. Help us to follow their wonderful examples, and dear Father, please raise up many more like them. In the Precious Name of our Savior we pray, Amen.