“Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not” (Jeremiah 33:3).

In the years preceding the Civil War in America, the nation was rocked by many negative forces. Materialism, greed, and oppression filled the land. Deeply burdened, a businessman in New York City gave up a lucrative trade position to enter a ministry of door-to-door visitation. The salary he took was less than one thousand dollars per year. Jeremiah C. Lanphier became burdened that the answer lay in prayer. On September 23rd, 1857, he started a noonday prayer meeting on the third story of an old church building. He put out a sign inviting businessmen to pray during lunch once a week.

The first week, six men showed up…ten minutes late. They prayed and agreed to meet the following week; nothing extraordinary happened. At the second meeting, twenty men came; the third meeting brought forty men. Lanphier decided to get a larger room and to have the meeting daily. In a short time, the “Fulton Street Meetings” grew to three thousand men meeting daily for prayer. Within six months, there were several groups in New York City consisting of more than ten thousand men!

Soon, a meeting started in Philadelphia…then in Boston. City-by-city, the wave of prayer swept along the east coast. By the end of 1858, the wave had swept westward all the way to California. Entire towns were arrested by the awareness of the presence of God! There was intense conviction of sin. Dance halls, houses of ill-repute and bars closed down by the hundreds; broken relationships were mended; family altars of worship and Scripture reading were restored to thousands of homes; mighty missionary organizations and prayer groups began. It is estimated that fifty thousand people per week were converted until the beginning of the Civil War in 1861. A journalist wrote, “It seems that all the world is praying.” There was an awakening through prayer!

Just one man, burdened by God and obedient to the Scriptures, was used to begin such a glorious manifestation of revival. Could it happen again? Are you willing? Are you praying regularly with others for America to return to God? Are you praying or playing? Will you begin, today, to seek out others to pray for God’s Son to be glorified in our midst? Are you willing to turn from every doubtful thing and surrender as a love slave to Jesus Christ? Meditate on II Chronicles 7:14. Ask God to let you experience His burden for America, then be faithful to pray.