The Blessed Alliance vs. The Billy Graham Rule
Updated: Nov 22, 2020
This photo is of my buddy, Maury Buchanan, and me in Bulembu, Eswatini. https://www.bulembu.org/ I first met and served alongside Maury there in 2009. We have continued going back and learning from our friends there for over a decade now. He is one of my most influential mentors – a man of integrity with all-star communication skills – and a love for people that is unmatched. His people-love is not a mushy, sentimental love – but one that challenges, forgives and reconciles. Hanging out with him was the best course in World Missions that I could ever hope to have.
What an internal struggle I have had over the years regarding serving alongside men! Good grief! Those of us in the Boomer Generation were mostly growing up in the 60’s in church were ABSOLUTELY taught the importance of the Billy Graham Rule. Consequently, when the stand-up comedians made fun of Mike Pence and his attention to this rule I kind of felt sympathy for him. I have to say that I chuckled a little, too.
The basis of the Billy Graham Rule is to protect two people from putting themselves into a situation where they might be tempted to have some deep emotional commitment that might lead to a sexual situation. About a dozen blogs could be written about this! It wasn’t his ONLY rule – just the only one that people like to focus on. You can read his full manifesto here. https://billygraham.org/story/the-modesto-manifesto-a-declaration-of-biblical-integrity/
Guarding your behavior is good advice. Wise advice. But when this “rule” is taken out of context then we all miss out on the very best of serving together. In her book, Lost Women of the Bible, Carolyn Custis James calls this the “blessed alliance.” She puts it much better than I can in her online article that is attached below:
“The notion that things work better and human beings become their best selves when men and women work together is found on page 1 of the Bible.”
“For when men and women are allied together, richer discussions result in better decisions, the elimination of blind spots and a greater kingdom force in the world.” https://carolyncustisjames.com/2012/09/18/the-blessed-alliance/
I am grateful for Maury – and his wife, Ann, whom I love dearly. My husband, Rick, has learned much from Maury as well.
Don’t miss out – Form your own blessed alliances.