How A Secret Prayer Meeting Started A Revival
By T. DeWitt Talmage
We were worshipping in the Brooklyn Academy of Music. It was the winter of 1875. We had great audiences, but I was impressed with the fact that conversions were not numerous.
On Tuesday, I invited to my house five elderly, consecrated Christian men. I took them to the top of the house and said, "I have called you here for special prayer. I am in agony for a great turning to God of the people. We have vast multitudes in attendance, and they are attentive and respectful, but I cannot see that they are saved. Let us kneel down and each one pray and not leave this room until we are all assured that the blessing will come and has come!"
It was the most intense crying unto God. I said, "Brethren, let this meeting be secret," and they said, "It shall be so."
The next Friday night came the usual prayer meeting. No one knew what had occurred on Tuesday night, but the meeting was unusually thronged. Men accustomed to praying with great composure broke down under emotion. The people were in tears. There were sobs and silences and solemnity of such unusual power that the worshippers looked into each other's faces as much as to say, "What does this mean?"
And when the following Lord's day came, although we were in a secular place, over four hundred arose for prayer, and a religious awakening took place that made the winter memorable.