Apparently, I seem to be the last person to have heard of this Spurgeon anecdote, so if this is old hat to you, please demonstrate the patient endurance of the saints. If this is not a true story, I’d appreciate a head’s up on that, too. I was unable to find an original source in the few minutes I had to search for it, but I found a bunch of people citing versions of it, so there.
Evangelist and preacher Charles Haddon Spurgeon ministered over nearly the entire last half of the 19th century. It is said he preached to over 10 million in that time and his Metropolitan Tabernacle in downtown London (still present today!) was one of the first ‘megachurches’ and one of the first non-denominational churches after they split from their Baptist affiliation over a controversy.
Prayer was such a vital part of his ministry that the following story is told (with variations):
“Five young college students were spending a Sunday in London, so they went to hear the famed C.H. Spurgeon preach. While waiting for the doors to open, the students were greeted by a man who asked, "Gentlemen, let me show you around. Would you like to see the heating plant of this church?" They were not particularly interested, for it was a hot day in July. But they didn't want to offend the stranger, so they consented. The young men were taken down a stairway, a door was quietly opened, and their guide whispered, "This is our heating plant." Surprised, the students saw 700 people bowed in prayer, seeking a blessing on the service that was soon to begin in the auditorium above. Softly closing the door, the gentleman then introduced himself. It was none other than Charles Spurgeon.”
It is said that Billy Graham testified that it was not until he realized and got serious about prayer that his ministry finally took off.
In all honesty, I am not a big pray-er. I know I should be. I fear the lack of active participation in our Christian Faculty Network can largely be attributed to this. Therefore, I want to do two things, actually one thing—enter into an agreement with the readership of TSR—If you will faithfully pray for us and all faculty, I will also commit to praying more for us.
Furthermore, if you want me to pray for you, I will do so. Please let me know via email or in a comment. Let me know if you want it shared on the blog or on my Twitter feed or if it is to be kept private, and you must update me on the status—no ‘drive-by’ prayer requests. Also, if you want me to pray over Aunt Bertha’s bunion, please have Aunt Bertha contact me. With the global reach of this blog, I honestly can’t pray for everyone’s entire prayer lists. I’m not Bruce Almighty (if you’ve seen that movie). I will pray for you.
Our faculty fellowship meets on Tuesdays during the academic year from 12:30-1:20 Central time, so that is the preferred time for you to pray for us, but just like the Internet, God is asynchronous, and will apply prayer as He sees fit.
"Prayer meetings are the throbbing machinery of the church." C.H. Spurgeon
Let’s have the first online and global boiler room!