When Revivalist Glenn Cook heard the stories about the bazaar meetings across town, he was furious. How dare someone come into his town and begin meetings that quickly became far more popular than his own. “They must be in heretical!”
The meetings were odd to say the least. The leader – an African American son of former slaves with one blind eye – had traveled from Texas to Los Angeles. Almost as soon as he arrived, he was summarily fired by the church who hired him. He started meeting in a house, but destroyed the porch. He finally rented a converted stable with a dirt floor to hold meetings.
Even the meetings themselves were more than a little unusual. People prayed for hours. Someone may or may not get up to speak, and if they did, it would likely NOT be the Pastor. In fact, the Pastor often spent much of the night with his head stuck in a shoe crate crying out to God for a move of His Spirit.
Reverend Cook decided that someone had to set the man straight and he was just the one to do it. Although he had intended to go alone, other church leaders found out and attended with him. When he got the opportunity, he let the strange Pastor know that he was clearly off the mark with God.
The Pastor patiently and calmly listened to every word the Evangelist and his entourage had to say. He weighed the words carefully for fear that there might be something to the accusations. If so, he sincerely wanted to know so that he could repent.
After a while, Reverend Cook began to feel ashamed. He was overwhelmed by the humility of the invading pastor. He was struck by how gently his adversary carried himself. Even more, he was amazed that despite all his accusations, the pastor took no offense. Cook would later write about the meeting and would cite Psalm 119:165, “Great peace have they who love the law, and nothing shall offend them.”
In a short time, Cook was convicted by the Holy Spirit and realized that it was not his adversary who was wrong, but he himself. Indeed, this pastor was not his enemy at all, rather he was a dear brother in Christ.
Cook came to love William Seymour and considered him the most humble man he had ever met. Together they would lead many to Christ and would upset the status quo not only of their city, but the entire world.
Where in your life is there room for greater humility? How might God use it to change the world?