"But when God, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son in me..." Galatians 1. 15f
All this talk of the revivals of yesteryear - where did they lead, how can they help us today? One example of the fruit of revival - those of the late 19th century on mainland Scotland - is the legendary Scottish preacher JS Stewart. Son of a jute merchant turned YMCA Secretary for Dundee, JS was raised in the heady atmosphere that produced the likes of Mary Slessor. His prodigious talents - for mathematics, languages and football - found direction and purpose in the faith that animated his development and turned him into the consummate scholar-preacher.
JS served on the front-line during the 1st World War, ministered in Aucherarder, Aberdeen and Edinburgh, taught in Scottish and American Universities. So much talent finding expression in so many environments produced a wealth of experience, yet his focus remained on proclaiming Christ. A biographer once observed that JS's work was lacking in apologetics (responding to the questions of the day) and that was because he was always on the offensive!
In these days of secularisation and moral confusion, might we find hope and inspiration from those who knew the power of God in their lives and lived in the simplicity of one aim: to proclaim his glory?