Charles Finney was used by God as a primary instrument to usher in the Second Great Awakening. When he preached in Rochester, New York, in the 1820s, more than 100,000 people came to Christ within a year. Liquor shops shut down, churches filled up, and the jail was nearly empty for years afterward. Finney’s name was a household word much as Billy Graham’s is today.
Not so well known, however, is the name of Daniel Nash, Finney’s seldom-seen partner in ministry. “Father Nash,” as some called him, would slip quietly into town a few weeks before Finney’s arrival, rent a room, find two or three like-minded Christians to join him, and start praying for the meetings that Finney would have in town. Within four months of Nash’s death, Finney’s ministry as an itinerate evangelist ended.
The earthly remains of Father Nash lie in a neglected cemetery in northern New York. His tombstone simply says:
Laborer with Finney
Mighty In Prayer
Nov.17, 1775-Dec. 20, 1831
The Apostle James wrote, “The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective” (5:16). The disciples did not ask Jesus to teach them to preach, as vital as preaching is, but rather to teach them to pray (Luke 11:1). Why? They knew him well enough to know his priorities and that prayer was as essential as breathing to him.
Mighty in prayer. What a testimony. How I would like for that to be mine. How about you?
© Chip Kirk