Wednesday, December 10, 2008


I just finished reading a biography about George Muller (should be 2 little dots over the "u" but making it happen is beyond me). Muller was born in Prussia in 1805 and died in Bristol, England in 1895. Between those years he lived out an amazing legacy of faith. He is best known for his orphanage work in Bristol and his praying. Muller did not believe in asking any other person for financial help. He believed only in praying and asking God. His journal is a record of how he prayed and how God responded. All six of the orphanage houses built were built on prayer. The 2,500 children they housed were sustained by prayer. Whenever anyone writes a serious book about the great men of prayer, George Muller is going to be high on the list.
To say the least, the book was inspiring and encouraging. However, it also made me wonder about something. Muller lived in another century and here we are still reading what he wrote and marvelling at his ministry. We do the same with folks like John Wesley, Dwight L. Moody, E. Stanley Jones, and Dietrich Bonhoeffer. All of these men are spiritual giants of other eras whose work for God somehow transcended the time in which they lived. I find myself wondering. Who are the spiritual giants of our day who will be read and read about a hundred or two hundred years from now? Are there any out there? Surely, there are. Who in 19th century Bristol, England would have thought that Muller's life would still be impacting the world in the 21st century?
I wonder who those folks are today. Some are no doubt serving God in what might be obscure places. Perhaps, some are current well-read writers of our day. I think that surely Henri Nouwen will be remembered and read, but then who is to say. I wonder, too, what you would say.

1 comment:

A cup bearer said...

That's an interesting question, and I don't have an answer. I do wonder though if any of those people you mentioned had a clue they were being used in such a mighty way, or if others of their day knew they were "great." Or does time filter?

Hmm. I think Beth Moore might be remembered for what she's done for women's ministry. But as far as the unknowns, those who serve so quietly as Muller did, it will indeed be interesting to see. And truth is, I bet they don't even know who they are themselves. That's probably the first qualification for being great.