Patsy Sorrels, columnist
Enid News and Eagle
ENID, Okla. —
In my research for Mother’s Day material, I ran across the Prayer of George Mueller, a Prussian-born English evangelist and philanthropist, who lived from 1805-1898.
During the last 60 years of his life — and he lived to be 92 or 93 — he obtained the English equivalent of $7,200,000, simply by praying.
This got my attention! What kind of faith … what kind of prayer does this? Over the course of time, this man established orphanages in Bristol and founded the Scriptural Knowledge Institution for Home and Abroad, and so much more, by prayer alone. He had no money, nor did he ask for any. He just believed God would provide everything they needed. All he need do was pray, and God would provide. What faith!
What does George Mueller have to do with Mother’s Day? Nothing really, except for his faith. The kind of faith a ‘Mother’ can possess when it comes to her children and family. That kind of bull-dog, tenacious faith that releases the hand of God, and all that is in it. Know anyone like that? I do, and I stand in awe.
Allow me to relate the story and prayer that stirred me so. The author says:
“I went to America some years ago with the captain of a steamer, who was a very devoted Christian. When off the coast of Newfoundland he said to me, ‘The last time I crossed here, five weeks ago, something happened which revolutionized the whole of my Christian life.’
“We had George Mueller of Bristol on board. I had been on the bridge 24 hours and never left it. George Mueller came to me, and said, ‘Captain, I have come to tell you that I must be in Quebec Saturday afternoon.’
“It is impossible,” I said. ‘Very well, if your ship cannot take me, God will find some other way. I have never broken an engagement in 57 years. Let us go down into the chart-room and pray,’ he said. I looked at that man of God, and thought to myself, ‘What lunatic asylum can that man have come from? I never heard of such a thing as this.’
“Mr. Mueller,” I said, “do you know how dense this fog is?” ‘No,’ he replied, ‘my eye is not on the density of the fog, but on the living God, who controls every circumstance of my life.’
“He knelt down and prayed one of the most simple prayers, and when he had finished, I was going to pray; but he put his hand on my shoulder and told me not to pray.
‘First, you do not believe God will answer; and second I believe He already has, and there is no need whatever for you to pray about it.’
I looked at him, and he said, ‘Captain, I have known my Lord for 57 years, and there has never been a single day that I have failed to get audience with the King. Get up, Captain, and open the door, and you will find the fog gone.’
“I got up, and the fog was indeed gone. On Saturday afternoon, George Mueller was in Quebec for his engagement.”
So many of us, like the ship captain, do not really believe. If we did, we would not sit and fret so about our families, our finances, our health, our churches, our circumstances … If we truly believed God would fix it, we would fall on our faces and pray! We live in such an instant, fast-paced world, we have forgotten how to wait. We want what we want ... and we want it NOW!
Scripture assures us that waiting works our patience and will increase our strength. “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings of eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint (Isaiah 40:29-31)!”
It tells us in Lamentations 3:25, “The Lord is good unto them that wait for Him, to the soul that seeketh Him.”
Saints, even though waiting may be painful and circumstances difficult, it is the season between sowing and reaping, “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning (Psalm 30:5).”
It is a time to stay strong. We must refuse to permit words of discouragement in our mouths, for He is with us: “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of My righteousness (Isaiah 41:10).”
Gain strength from these passages. Open your Bible, find your promise and believe! Have faith in God and know that “When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Living God will lift up a standard against him (Isaiah 54:17).” Know that the banner over you is love, my friends, pure love.
George Mueller left us with two very simple, yet vital tips for believing and receiving answers to our prayers. When it was laid upon his heart to pray for anything, he would search the Scriptures to find if there was some promise that covered the case. Sometimes he would search the Scriptures for days before he presented his petition to God. When he finally found that promise, with his Bible open before him, and his finger upon that promise, he would plead that promise, and so he received what he asked for. But, he always prayed with an open Bible before him.
To all the wives, mothers, grandmothers, foster mothers, spiritual mothers ... take heart in knowing what Scripture says in James 5:16: “The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man or women (you name here) availeth much.” In so doing, all of heaven is activated. Angels are positioned, demons confronted, strategies are being developed ... God is moving, ladies, all because you prayed.
So, don’t look at the density of the fog surrounding your vessel today; rather, keep your eye on the living God, for it is He who controls every circumstance of your life. — if only you will let Him.
Happy Mother’s Day to my beautiful girls, my mother, who I dearly miss, and to all the beautiful ladies reading this.
Keep the faith and worship somewhere today.
Sorrels can be reached at psorrels@enid news.com or at (580) 548-8140.