John Wesley, who was an Anglican Church pastor, attended a prayer meeting on May 24th in 1738. At that meeting he experienced the power of Holy Spirit and he made this journal entry:
“In the evening I went very unwillingly to a society in Aldersgate Street, where one was reading Luther’s preface to the Epistle to the Romans. About a quarter before nine, while he was describing the change which God works in the heart through faith in Christ, I felt my heart strangely warmed. I felt I did trust in Christ, Christ alone, for salvation; and an assurance was given me that He had taken away my sins, even mine, and saved me from the law of sin and death.”
Before John Wesley received the Holy Spirit, he experienced a season of drought in his spiritual life and ministry. His ministry, his American mission was not successful and he experienced failure in relationship. Because of that his faith was a bit shaken. At that time the Holy Spirit came to John Wesley unexpectedly and it was God’s moment. This Holy Spirit experience, trusting Jesus and assurance of salvation from sin and death, changed his ministry and his life. He went out to the street and market places where Anglican Church pastors didn’t preach the Gospel. (They did only in the church) He traveled around the rural areas and mine villages to meet people who needed not only spiritual guidance but physical needs. John Wesley preached the Good News of Jesus and shared his life with them.
The Church’s rebirth happened unexpectedly in England when John Wesley who experienced the power of the Holy Spirit shared his salvation story through the Gospel. Where he preached the Good News of Jesus Christ, he made small groups so that they could continue to worship and do bible studies. He also elected leaders for the small groups to take care of the people. This our Methodist history and we can find our DNA in these stories. Today I am praying for the church, our Methodist church:
God send your Holy Spirit so that we can be renewed. Holy Spirit, come to us, transform us, to be new people and to be a new church. Amen.