Monday, 24 May 2021

Strangely warmed

On this day in 1738 a young John Wesley went 'very unwillingly' to a religious meeting in the City of london, where he heard a message that changed his life, and equipped him to be one of the greatest evangelists that our nation has ever produced.

Near that spot (left) is a memorial to that life changing encounter, the Aldersgate Flame, on which are engraved these words of Wesley describing the events of that night:

 "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."

His brother, Charles, became a prolific hymn writer, writing 6,000 hymns in all. A year after he and John had been converted, he wrote a hymn 'For the Anniversary Day of One's Conversion.

It orginally ran to 18 verses. Today we sing six of them. Here are the first two: 

 O for a thousand tongues to sing
my great Redeemer's praise,
the glories of my God and King,
the triumphs of his grace!

My gracious Master and my God,
assist me to proclaim,
to spread thro' all the earth abroad
the honours of your name.

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