Kirkintilloch (1859)

The Wesleyan daily prayer-meeting, conducted regularly by Mr Forsyth, continues to be accompanied with gracious influence, refreshing seasons, and Revival fruits. Night after night, as the meeting is dismissed at ten o'clock, persons present themselves for counsel and prayer, in concern about their souls. These comprise persons of all ages and either sex. The stripling and the hoary-haired; the child and the parent; the brother and sister; the careless and the professor; the scoffer and the communicant; the learned and the illiterate: alike, under the teaching and influence of God's truth and Holy Spirit, come to the feet of Jesus, and alike, under deep conviction of sin, ask, " What must I do to be saved?" During the two months the daily prayer-meeting has been held, more than a hundred have presented themselves for counsel and prayer in concern about their souls, and with them have the people of God rejoiced in their joy of believing in Jesus unto forgiveness and peace. A few of these have been what is called "prostration cases," but they are the exception. One young man, who tarried on his knees in prayer after all had left, on being raised for conversation, soon after dropped down on the floor as if shot. Another, a young woman; dropped three times off the seat, and had to be assisted home. Both seemed under very keen conviction, and deeply anxious.

A very considerable number of the cases were persons connected with the various churches in town, and who had been in the communion of the same. One young woman, on obtaining peace, exclaimed, "What a sinner I have been! sitting down at the Lord's table, and not his child, eating damnation to myself! Oh, the goodness of God in bearing with me so!" Another, an old communicant, said, "My religion till now has been nothing but a form."

Several requests for prayer have been handed in time after time of an interesting nature. In October, Mr Haltridge, from Coleraine, addressed the meeting; which was crowded to excess, and large numbers could not be admitted. While he narrated his remarkable history and career of wickedness; and conversion to God, a deep solemnity rested on the people, and many were in tears. After the address a very considerable number were in deep concern of soul, who experienced the blessing of peace. Repeatedly had the meeting to be concluded before the audience would depart. Mr H.'s visit was one of great blessing, and will long be remembered. So great was the interest excited by Mr H's visit, that a meeting was held next morning (Thursday), at ten o'clock, that he might be further heard. This meeting was also of a most interesting nature (see Revival, No. 14, p. 110).

On the evening of the half-yearly fair, when full license is generally taken to indulge in vice, the chapel was filled at the meeting with an anxious audience. A gracious influence rested on the service, and seven professed to enter into the liberty of God's dear children. One young person in deep conviction seemed almost convulsed; she lay back as pale as death, but fully absorbed in the interest of her state, for while the hymn was sung-- "My God is reconciled, His pardoning voice I hear—" she started up, and with a countenance now radiant with joy, with upraised arms walked up and down the pew, exclaiming, " My God is reconciled!" "Jesus!" Amid this rapturous deliverance, other penitents laid hold of the hope set before them in the gospel and rejoiced together.

Thus is the Lord showing his "goings forth" among us, "exhibiting his glory," and displaying his saving power in refreshing his people and adding to the number of the faithful. Surely it may be said, in the language of the prophet, "Thou shalt no more be termed forsaken, neither shall thy land any more be termed desolate, but thou shalt be called Hephzibah, and thy land Beulah; for the Lord deljghteth in thee" (Isa. lxii. 4). From 'The Revival Newspaper, Volume i, p133.

The spirit of prayer increases and its power is more evident in the numerous awakenings and cases of conversion. A woman presented herself at the anxious meeting in deep distress and concern about her salvation. She had been led to consider her ways by the circumstances connected with a happy death-bed scene, and now, awakened to her state, would, as she said, give everything to possess the peace and happiness her departed friend enjoyed. After earnest prayer she was enabled to lay hold of the hope (Christ) set before us in the gospel. At the dismissal of the meeting, she addressed one of the brethren and adverted to the time most affectionately when she was a scholar of his in the Sabbath-school.

A man from the country one evening found his way to the meeting, and presented himself at the close with the inquirers, seeking Jesus. He had been stirred up by the conversion of some of his friends and was constrained to yield himself to God by faith in Jesus Christ.

On Sabbath evening, after Mr Forsyth had dismissed the meeting for the third time, a considerable number remained behind, desirous of further exercises. After a time a hymn was sung and prayer was made, during which a girl cried out fearfully, in such a strain of prayer as struck all present with astonish¬ment, thus—"0 Lord, have mercy upon me, a great sinner Jesus, I am sinking, sinking into the pit, that bottomless pit! Come! Come! Come, Jesus and save me!" and fell back into the arms of Mr Forsyth, who was near her. He prayed with her, and after prayer she sung with most enraptured. feelings "My God is reconciled, His pardoning voice I hear," &c. and with evidently great peace of mind, soon after began to pray wondrously for others around her in distress. Surely out of die mouths of babes and sucklings He has perfected praise. This case had a most powerful effect on those present. While God's people looked on in amazement, those who were still out of Christ were on their knees in tears and prayers for mercy, and ere the protracted meeting closed ten had professed to obtain peace in believing in Christ.

From 'The Revival Newspaper,' Volume i, p148.

Additional Information

The Wesleyan Chapel used to be the fourth building on the south of Queen Street, west of Cowgate. The area has been re-developed; it is now a large complex.

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