In the fall of 1904 a revival broke out in Wales. During the next six months, 100,000 people were saved in this great spiritual awakening, No one organized the campaign. They did not use advertising, public relations, radio broadcasts, or great soul winning and witnessing campaigns. God did a sovereign work that captured the attention of the world. When the Spirit of God fell on a people who were right with Him, things began to happen. Without anybody witnessing to them, people cried out: “What must I do to be saved?”
Wales is a principality of Great Britain west of London. The area has a wonderful history of revivals among God’s people. By the beginning of this century people had a longing for a fresh wind of God’s Spirit. The last great revival had taken place in 1859-60. Church membership had declined. People were indifferent to religious matters. The churches were formal. God’s people needed revival.
By 1904 God was at work in many places and in many people through Wales. The nation was like a tinder box God had prepared for the quick spread of revival fire. God chose to use a young man named Evan Roberts in a special way. Evan worked in the coal mines of Wales, but he had a great burden for revival. For 13 years he prayed for an outpouring of God’s Spirit. Prayer meetings with different groups of God’s people became a major emphasis in his life. Early in 1904, Evan accepted God’s call to preach, and he went to school to prepare.
Following a Sunday School service, a man named Seth Joshua led in prayer. One of his requests was, “Lord, bend us.” The Spirit of God used that simple statement to touch Evan’s heart. On his way out the door he kept praying, “O Lord, bend me!”
God gave Evan a burden to go to his home church in Loughor to conduct a week of services with the young people. Following a Monday night prayer meeting on October 31, 1904, seventeen young people stayed to hear Evan’s message. His message had four points:
1. You must put away any unconfessed sin.
2. You must put away any doubtful habit.
3. You must obey the Spirit promptly.
4. You must confess Christ publicly.
That night, all seventeen responded to his appeal. Crowds increased nightly. The Spirit was poured out on the nation as God’s people returned to Him. Lost people were dramatically converted – 70,000 in two months, 85, 000 in five months, and over 100,000 in the six months following that October meeting.
These commitments were life changing. Taverns closed due to the lack of business. The crime rate dropped radically leaving the police with little to do. People paid old debts and made restitution for thefts and wrongs committed. There was even a work slowdown in the coal mines as the mules had to learn the new language of the converted miners.
News of the revival spread to other countries, and people were stirred to prayer. Soon God was at work in nations around the world bringing people to Himself.
*Read the four points of Evan Roberts’ message and ask God now He wants you to respond to Him in any specific area of your life.
For further reading on the Wales Awakening see: The Flaming Tongue by J. Edwin Orr, Chicago: Moody Press, 1973; or Glory Filled the Land edited by Richard Owen Roberts, Wheaton: International Awakening Press, 1989
P R A Y E R F O C U S
• Pray for His Spirit to be poured out upon our children, and the youth of this nation.
• Pray that the next generation will have a heart to seek and serve the Lord.
• Pray that the children will be protected from the snares and devices of the enemy.
• Pray for the mass media that many believers will invade this field and raise a standard of righteousness.
By Pastor Dotty Schmitt