Cliff Barrows, long time music director of Billy Graham crusades died last week.
I’ve recently dedicated my passion for music to God. I want to use my vocal cords and fingers in the wonderful task of helping people who do not know the Lord to worship Him. This is all Cliff Barrows lived for. His name became famous due to all the thousands of worshipers he gathered during well known Billy Graham evangelistic crusades all around the world. People like Cliff Barrows have been inspirational giants for me.
I was in Tennessee when I got an email from our Worship Ministry Director at Calvary Church about the funerals of Cliff Barrows. Our choir will sing at his funeral. One of the songs is entitled: “THE GLORY AND MAJESTY OF YOUR NAME” written after Psalms 8.
I didn’t know that song. So I had to listen to it a lot.
This morning, I wanted to discover Psalms 8 and make it mine so that I could sing it from the depths of my heart and not just words that have been written by someone else. I opened my Bible and studied Psalms 8 which is a song actually written by one of the greatest worship leaders of history. For the first time, I sensed that Psalms 8 was written for me and I could identify myself with what was written in it.
As we were performing in the sanctuary during the memorial service, a sense of awe struck me. The glory and majesty of God were present. Bill Gaither called us (the choir) to join him while he was singing and remembering his friend gone. Will Graham read a letter from his dad Franklin Graham. His voice flinched and he could not speak for some minutes as he was reading that letter. Cliff Barrow’s wife, daughter and grand-kids testimonies were heart-rending. That man lived God’s Word and God lived in him. No wonder why he could have such an impact on this world.
The last wish of Cliff Barrows was to not have any flowers on his casket. What he desired that should be put on his casket was a quilt; a quilt that was made by his friend from the shirts he wore during the evangelistic crusades with Billy Graham. When I heard it, I looked carefully at that quilt: at the centre was a cross. Cliff Barrows wanted his last appearance on earth to be about God and His love for us. What a legacy!