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Leighton Ford Ministries

In Tribute to Dr. Lloyd Ogilvie

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On Wednesday of this week God’s servant Lloyd, whom I counted as a dear friend, and great admired, departed this earthly life and ministry to the place Jesus his Lord has prepared for him.

Lloyd died at 88 after a fairly long battle with cancer.

Many knew and profited from his ministry at Hollywood Presbyterian Church, and other congregations before he served there, as Chaplain of the United States Senate for many years, as TV preacher, and author.

I knew him as a friend, never close geographically, but always be frequent phone calls, and sometimes at conferences together.For many years our local Leadership Breakfast Group were blessed by using his books to provoke and inspire our monthly gatherings.
I love him, thank God for him, and recommend his ongoing ministry through his on line sermons and his writings.
Many years ago I copied the following prayer from one of his books.  I have prayed it hundreds of times before I preacher or ministered myself.  I commend it to you.With a grateful heart for God’s servant, Lloyd,Leighton Ford

A Prayer Before Entering into the Ministry of the Day


Lord, here’s my mind, think your thoughts in me.
Be my wisdom, knowledge, and insight.
Here is my voice.
You told me not to worry what to say and how to say it.
Free me to speak with silence or words, whichever is needed.
Give me your timing and tenderness.
Now Lord, here is my body.
Release creative affection in my face, my touch, my embrace.
And Christ, if there is something I am to do
by your indwelling presence,
however menial or tough, control my will to do it.
Lord, I am ready now to be your manifest intervention in situations,
to infuse joy, or absorb pain and aching anguish.
I plan to live this day and the rest of my life in the reality of you in me.
Thank you for making it so!

This prayer above of Dr. Lloyd Ogilvie’s I have used for many years as I prepare to preach or begin some other ministry.

Sunset at the Bellfry

By | Photography, Poetry | No Comments

I have seen many sunsets
across my years
each radiant in its moment
and original style as with this sunset
in the Virginia hills
made special by its time
in space and flowing colors
but also who was with me
on the hilltop and who came to mind
as the sky dimmed and
I made my way
ever so carefully
downward through
the bent grass path toward night

Leighton Ford
At the Bellfry, Virginia
May 2019

A Good Friday Confession

By | Food for thought | No Comments

Today, I am an evangelical Christian. I have wondered, in some recent days, whether I want to be called an evangelical.

The term has been so politicized, so pejorative. But today, on Good Friday, how can I be otherwise? It is not that I hold a privileged position, Or, am a political activist. Or, that I hold a certain set of beliefs.

It is that I am upheld, by the evangel, the good news, that by the grace of God I am what I am, a child of God through our Lord Jesus Christ, who loved me and gave himself for me, who became obedient to death, and rose, that I might live in him, fully, now and forever. Today, and every day, I have the assurance of living in that grace, and of telling others:

Jesus Christ is alive ... and well!


LFM Leader Elizabeth Archer Featured

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One of LFM’s Mentorship Leaders, Elizabeth Archer, was recently featured for her work with her father at the Masters.

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The Caring Voice

By | Reflections and Readings | No Comments

His public voice was widely heard and stirring. What was not overheard, but what I most fondly remember, is the caring private voice.

I remember his breaking voice, choking back tears, as he spoke at the funeral of our son Sandy, who died during heart surgery when he was twenty-one.

There was his caring voice to our younger son Kevin who that week-end was at a Young Life gathering in the mountains. Billy was the one who drove to tell Kevin that his brother had died, took him home for the night, and drove him to Charlotte

Many years later there was the tender voice of an uncle to our Debbie, who had a recurrence of breast cancer and was at Mayo Clinic for tests, dreading that the disease might have spread. Unknown to her Billy was there for a check-up. When she went for her next test he was waiting for her at the end of a long hall. She saw an old man in a wheel chair. Then she recognized her uncle, and threw herself into his arms. Billy, for whom tears never came easily, cried with her, prayed, and held her.

Later at his home, sitting on his bed, she said, “Uncle Billy, I have heard you preach to big crowds. But as far as I am concerned that was the best sermon you ever preached. It was not you on a platform speaking to a crowd, but both of us in our weakness, me so afraid, and you in a wheel chair with no one to observe.”

One Year Ago Today

By | Reflections and Readings | No Comments
At 7:45 am, a year ago today, my phone rang.  It was a reporter asking, “Is it true?” He was asking whether Billy had died.  I told him I would check, called Billy’s oldest daughter Gigi, and she confirmed it was so, that he had gone home to the Lord a little earlier that morning.
On the day we celebrated his life and laid him to rest at the Billy Graham Library I took the photo below.
I was standing at the end of the casket, and realized that a cross was shining across the casket, reflected from the cross-shaped window over the entrance to the library.
It was so fitting –  since BIlly had preached about the cross of Jesus all his ministry, in every part of the world. And had quoted many times Paul’s words, “God forbid that I should glory save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Today Jeanie and I remember our dear Billy and what he meant to us and so many across the years.
And also we are reminded to Lift High the Cross!