Summary: If we will... then He will!
In the summer of 1876 the grasshoppers did great damage to the crops of the state of Minnesota. The spring of the next year gave every indication that it would again be a bad year for the crops in this state.
So Gov. John S. Pillsbury proclaimed April 26, 1877 to be a day of prayer and fasting in the state of Minnesota.
Everyone prayed!!! Every man and every woman and every child prayed that day.
All the schools were closed. All the shops, stores and offices were closed that day as a holy hush and reverence settled over the state of Minnesota.
The next day the temperature soared to a mid summer heat. Not normal for April and not normal for that part of the country. The larva began to wiggle into life and they thought OH NO it’s going to happen again.
The unusual heat persisted for 3 days and by that time all the larva had hatched. But on the 4th day the temperature suddenly dropped drastically and frost covered the ground that night. Because of the frost and cold temperature all the grass-hoppers were killed. Just as if they had been sprayed with poison they all died.
The farmers of Minnesota never forgot April 26th 1877. It went down in the history of Minnesota as “The day that God answered prayer for the people”.
If my people will … Then I will…
The BIG IF!!
We in Pentecost have a tremendous heritage in prayer.
Heritage – is something handed down from past generations, a legacy, a property that is inherited.
To some it means:
ÿ Washington D.C. – monuments ect…
ÿ Family owned business
ÿ Money placed in a trust
ÿ House or property
But to us as Pentecostals, to us as Apostolics, our legacy is PRAYER. Our heritage is men and women who prayed around the clock for Apostolic Revival!!
Of course, we can’t spend all of our time looking at the past. Too many great things are happening today and will happen in the future.
If a driver spends all his time looking in
the rearview mirror, He is bound to run into something in front of him. But an occasional look is healthy. And so today I want us to realize our heritage.
Each generation must look back to it’s beginning and express it’s gratitude for those who gave meaning to the present. We are the fulfillment of the dreams and the prayers of our early elders and saints.
The mighty Yosemite Falls must reach to it’s highest source, the ice-capped glacier and the tiny streams that flow into it and say, “Without you there could be no rushing, beautiful falls of water to greet observers or furnish a powerful source of energy.
We must earnestly contend for the faith that was given to us. We must never let the things that were handed down to us fall by the way. But each succeeding generation must learn how to Pray.
We should remember the past, and in our remembrance, we must also, for ourselves, learn to serve God in prayer as our forefathers did.
Let me read to you about some of the heritage that we have…
Brother Frank Ewart described a typical prayer meeting in a home: “They found such a wonderful spirit of prayer in the home that they began to humble them-selves before the Lord. Everyone who entered the home would be impressed with the need of seeking the face of God in earnest prayer. . . . Those were Holy Ghost meetings led of the Lord, and all went down in humility together at His feet.”
Frank Bartleman, an eyewitness, described the spirit of prayer during this time; “There was a feeling that God was about to do something extraordinary. The spirit of prayer came more and more heavily upon us. I would lie on my bed in the daytime and roll and groan under the burden. At night I could scarcely sleep for the spirit of prayer. I fasted much, not caring for food while burdened. At one time I was in soul travail for nearly twenty-four hours without intermission. It nearly used me up. Prayer literally consumed me. I would groan all night in my sleep. . .
“I was carrying this burden (of prayer) now in ever-increasing volume, night and day. The ministry was intense. It was the ‘fellowship of His sufferings’ of ‘travail’ of soul, with groanings that could not be uttered. Most believers find it easier to criticize than to pray. My life be this time was literally swallowed up in prayer. I was praying day and night. . . . It seemed a great privilege to spend a whole night with the Lord. . . .
“Brother Pednleton and myself could generally be found lying full length on the low platform on our faces, in prayer, during these services. It was almost impossible to stay off our faces in those days. The presence of the Lord was so real.”