My family and I recently packed our bags and traveled the roads to the Smoky Mountains. One of my favorite stops along the way was visiting the place of the first recorded outpouring of God in this country; Murphy, North Carolina! This particular move of God took place in the latter part of the 1800s, even before the well-known Azusa Street revival.
It all began in Tennessee when two young men, mighty preachers of the Word of God, decided to pray for an encounter. It wasn’t long before they moved their intercession to a small school house in Murphy. But when many of the town’s people witnessed the powerful manifestation of the Holy Ghost, they spitefully forced the people to leave the school house out of fear (Mark 16:17-18).
The people, refusing to quench the move of God, as well as bow down to lifeless religion, built a log church just up the road and continued participating in what God so desired to bring to Earth again (Acts 2). Many experienced the miraculous power of God for the first time in their life, thus eagerly expanding the greatest Kingdom ever created.
Unfortunately, as before, it didn’t take long for the enemy to rise up in fear with the unmistakable intent to extinguish the Fire. Furthermore, those enabling the devil’s agenda, attempted to burn down the log church, but their plans divinely failed as rain fell from heaven. Soon after, however, they succeeded in tearing down every log and burning them piece by piece.
Once relocated to a house nearby, hooded men, riding their horses, extended threats and hatred toward those involved in this revival. Yet, one woman in particular, standing firm in the faith of Jesus Christ, absolutely refused to surrender to the adversary. Understanding her real fight, instead of promoting violence, she extended love, and a gracious hand, and actually invited the men into her own home for a meal (Ephesians 6).
Princess, this is actually quite an incredible story, and I encourage you to dive into this part of history and discover some of its greatest treasure, such as this very powerful account! The only thing standing today, reminding us of such tenacity, Truth, genuine love, and martyrship, are monuments that rest in the places where this all unfolded a century ago.
I can only hope that I too could’ve stood right beside the souls of those who so desperately, and unwaveringly desired to share such an amazing God with such a broken world; one that is certainly in need of a Savior. Could you stand too, Princess – especially in the world we live in today?
For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed (James 1:6).