What does an authentic world-igniting revival look like? And, how are the seeds of revival planted?
This we can learn from the life and work of William Joseph Seymour—God’s chosen vessel and apostle of the Azusa Street Revival. Bishop William Joseph Seymour, was a crucial leader and pioneer in the worldwide Pentecostal movement of the 20th century.
Born and raised in the small impoverished town of Centerville, Louisiana he faced unimaginable obstacles and discrimination for being the son of two formerly enslaved people in the South. Taking into consideration the socio-economic conditions in the South at the time, it may have seemed that there was little chance for Bishop Seymour to succeed. However, William Joseph Seymour had a destiny from the Lord to set out on a mission for revival.
So, why is William Joseph Seymour so important and what does he have to do with your life? He is important because he was a key influencer in the revival and rise of the Pentecostal/charismatic movements globally, but what makes him relevant to your life in addition to this is that he is a prime example of living for the Lord and stepping into the destiny He has planned for your life. William Joseph Seymour is a prime example of having faith in the Lord’s plan for your life.
What Seymour did required courage; it required faith. Through his efforts in revival, Seymour helped bring thousands of souls to the Lord. However, if he did not step out of his comfort zone and into his destiny, he would have never accomplished this. His determination and dedication are what founded the Pentecostal movement in the church.
Seymour overcame the discriminatory Jim Crow Laws, physical disabilities and persecution because of his race from members of his church. Despite all of these challenges, he kept unwavering faith in the Lord. Bishop Seymour pressed forward on his mission from the Lord and made it all the way from his small town in Louisiana to Los Angeles, California in 1906. There he continued his work for the Lord.
The leaders of the church he was working with disagreed with how he was teaching revival so they did everything they could to keep him out and away from the church. This did not stop Seymour from his destiny the Lord had set for him. Seymour had faith and resilience and continued his work, gathering crowds in houses. No one could see it yet, but this method of grassroots revival would spread like wildfire around the world. He “unlocked” heaven and Azusa became the habitation of heaven.
The greatest attribute of revival was persistence in prayer. During the Azusa Street Revival, it was noted that Bishop Seymour spent hours with his head in a makeshift pulpit of crates praying for hours daily. His sensitivity to the Holy Spirit was so strong that while praying upstairs “in the carrying room” he would tap his foot if he sensed someone downstairs was operating in the flesh. We learn from Seymour what man rejects, God elects.
Seymour faced trials and tribulations on the road to his destiny. He was even denied to pray on the same prayer bench as white people in the church because of the unjust and cruel segregation laws at the time. Heaven poured out as a reward for his dedication and the way the overflowing power of the Holy Spirit poured out was not seen since the time of the Apostles.
Because Seymour listened to the Lord and trusted in the Lord he had the courage to keep going. If Seymour had let the world around him get in his head, he would have never been able to fulfill his destiny, which would have rippling effects across the church. All odds were against him, but because the Lord was with him, he did not fail.
When you walk with the Lord, you will not fail. Whatever you may be called to do, do not run from it and do not be afraid to take chances and listen to what the Lord has destined for you. If William Joseph Seymour, a poor boy from the middle of Louisiana, can help save souls and start a worldwide revival in the church, imagine what you can do if you listen to the Lord, have faith and step into your destiny.
To hear more about how to put your faith in the Lord and step into your destiny, click here to listen now to my podcast, Day of Destiny.
Dr. Michelle Corral is driven by a mission to bring the prophetic Word of God to Southern California and the entire globe, Dr. Michelle Corral, CEO and founder of Breath of the Spirit Ministries International, Inc., Chesed for Humanity International, provides destiny-focused principles for your life. Refugee relief is one of the many outreaches established by Dr. Corral through her organization, Chesed for Humanity International. She has helped with refugees worldwide, specifically in Syria at Al Mafraq border of Jordan. She is the pastor of Breath of the Spirit Prophetic Word Center. For more than 42 years, seen throughout the world on various Christian television networks such as God TV, Word Network, Impact Television Network and more. She is the author of 8 books, including her most recent release, Secrets of the Anointing. This anointed minister has continued to serve those in need through humanitarian efforts, powerful books and more. Please visit Michelle’s website at mydayofdestiny.com