John Wesley was converted after attempting to be a missionary in America. He wrote in his dairy on Tuesday, January 24, 1738, “I went to America to convert the Indians; but oh! who shall convert me?” The answer to his question was found in a praying group of Germans called Moravians.
The leader of the Moravians was Count Ludwig von Zinzendorf. He stated, “My joy until I die . . . [is] to win souls for the Lamb.” Zinzendorf established a community called Herrnhut (“The Lord’s Watch”), located in eastern Germany. A prayer meeting began and had far-reaching effects. These Moravians sought the Lord and cried unto Him for His power and presence. That prayer meeting lasted one hundred years, and out of it grew a missionary movement. The hearts of the Moravians were touched by the heart of God, which resulted in them developing a heart for the world.
Wesley had a “divine appointment” with some of those Moravians on board a ship for America. A great storm overtook them while they were at sea. The water split the mainsail in pieces and covered the ship. The English began to scream for their lives. However, the Moravians quietly worshiped God in the face of death. Wesley asked one afterward, “Were you not afraid?” He simply responded, “I thank God, no.”
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John Wesley saw God on the faces of those dear praying people, and he never forgot what he saw. When he returned to England he visited the Moravians and had discussion with some of them. He attended a prayer meeting that the Moravians held at Aldersgate Street in London. Martin Luther’s preface to the epistle to the Romans was read during that prayer meeting. Wesley described what transpired. He wrote, “About a quarter before nine, while he was describing the change which God works in the heart through faith in Christ, I felt my heart strangely warmed. I felt I did trust in Christ, Christ alone for salvation; and an assurance was given me that He had taken away my sins, even mine, and saved me from the law of sin and death.” That group of praying Germans lit a fire in Wesley that spread throughout Britain and extends today around the world. The forerunners for the revival in the 1700s were a band of praying men and women in Germany. They waited for the Lord at Herrnhut, and He visited His people.
Gracious Father, draw me to my knees again and again so that my heart is fully bowed before You. I repent of my lack of faith, and my inability to trust You completely for all that You long to do in me and through me if I would simply be yielded. May my life reflect the life of Christ and may it be as fruitful as John Wesley or the Moravians! Light the fire in my soul that burns like a torch for the sake of Your name!
–Adapted from The Prayer Factor: Adventures with a God Who Hears and Answers by Sammy Tippit. This book is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
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Express your love and admiration for the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Thank the Father for his love, Christ for his grace, and the Holy Spirit for his fellowship. Confess any unresponsiveness to the Father’s love, the Savior’s grace, and the Holy Spirit’s inner working. Commit yourself to loving God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength. Ask that you may become a temple of the living God so that he will live in you, walk with you, and be your God (2 Cor. 6:16).
Pray for a congregation whose members are bound by love to each other and willing to say “I am sorry; please forgive me.” Pray that the Spirit may mold your congregation into a loving, redemptive fellowship.
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