[anzac] 'VIOLENT' PRAYER Brought REVIVAL

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From: "REVIVAL List" <prophetic@...>
Date: Thu, 26 Oct 2006 14:43:20 -0500
IMPORTANT:  Anyone who has studied Finney or other Revivalists
will notice that they believed in a kind of 'violent', wrestling, 
"agonizing" prayer - and they found this to be a major secret to 
Revival. Below is the story of another who discovered the same secret:
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JAMES O. FRASIER - Violent Groans and Cries of Travailing Prayer

-by David Smithers.


Some of God's most precious servants have gone through life 
hidden and unnoticed. Forgotten and ignored by the religious 
masses, they thrive in obscurity and solitude...  William Jay, the 
English preacher, wrote, "Many who are great in the sight of the 
Lord are living in cottages and hovels, and are scarcely known..." 

James O. Fraser, of the China Inland Mission, was one of those 
choice servants of God who was content to labor in almost total 
obscurity. This gifted man was a preacher, linguist, musical 
genius and engineer. He came to the Yunnan Province of China in 
1910 with a heart longing for the souls of the forgotten Lisu tribal 
people. As Fraser gave himself to the work of reaching the Lisu, 
he became somewhat forgotten. For years he lived alone, hidden 
behind the great mountain ranges of China's far west. Few people 
really knew James Fraser. There was an air of mystery about this 
talented man who had chosen a primitive pioneers life over the 
applause of a English concert hall. Some said that it was 
absolutely wrong for Fraser to waste and bury his gifts on the 
mission field. Yet, Mr. Fraser was greatly used of God through 
prayer and loving labor to turn multitudes of Lisu from their slavery 
of demon-worship to Jesus Christ. After mastering the difficult Lisu 
language, he developed his own "Fraser Script" and translated the 
Scriptures into the tribal dialect. By 1916 there was a real move of 
the Spirit among the Lisu, resulting in sixty thousand baptisms 
within only two years. The Lisu church continued to grow and 
eventually became one of the largest tribal Christian bodies in the world. 

J. O. Fraser's success was not the result of his impressive talents 
or giant intellect. Mr. Fraser succeeded where others often fail, 
because he had learned how to touch God through prayer. 
Isolated and hidden away behind the mountains, he was 
compelled to seek God for his every need. "To know the real 
Fraser one needed to hear him in prayer. Prayer was the very 
breath of life to him, and in prayer he seemed to slip from time 
into eternity." For many of us prayer is not a first choice, but a 
last resort. Fraser had learned out of sheer necessity to pray 
fervently and continuously. Frequently the mountainside would 
witness the piercing, importunate pleadings of this man who 
counted his prayer-time not by minutes but by hours." Fraser was 
not a man who merely said prayers, he TRAVAILED in prayer. He 
knew the spiritual necessity of wrestling and agonizing in prayer. 
He writes, "How much of our prayer is of the quality we find in 
Hannah's bitterness of soul, 'when she prayed unto the Lord?' How 
many times have we ever 'WEPT SORE' before the Lord? We have 
prayed much perhaps, but our longings have not been deep 
compared with hers. We have spent much time upon our knees, it 
may be, without our hearts going out in agony of desire. But real 
supplication is the child of heartfelt desire, and cannot prevail 
without it; a desire not of earth nor issuing from our own sinful 
hearts, but wrought into us by God Himself. Oh for such desires. 
Oh for Hannah's earnestness, not in myself only but in all who are 
joining in prayer for these poor heathen aborigines." 

To our shame, some of the most basic spiritual disciplines of our 
godly forefathers have become strange and unfamiliar to many of 
us. One of the most effective weapons of the praying saints of old 
was the discipline of, praying through." J. O. Fraser both 
encouraged and practiced this powerful reality. Upon this subject 
Mr. Fraser writes, "We must be prepared for serious warfare, 'and 
having done all, to stand,' we must fight through, and then stand
victorious on the battlefield. Is not this another secret of many 
unanswered prayers, that they are not fought through? If the result 
is not seen as soon as expected, Christians are apt to lose heart, 
and if it is still longer delayed, to abandon it altogether. You know 
the name they give to places in England when the building (or 
whatever it is) is abandoned, when only half of it is completed- So 
and so's 'Folly'. I wonder whether some of our prayers do not 
deserve the same stigma. Luke 14: 28-30 applies to prayers as 
well as towers. We must count the cost before praying the prayer 
of faith. We must be willing to pay the price. We must mean 
business. We must set ourselves to 'see things through' (Eph. 6:18, 
'In all perseverance')." Wrestling with demonic spirits is a daily
reality of spiritual survival. Spiritual warfare is not learned in our 
leisure time, but is thrust upon us as we begin to threaten the 
kingdom of darkness. In 1913-1914, James Fraser went through a 
time of deep spiritual oppression that forced him to deal with 
issues many would rather ignore. As Fraser reached out to the 
spiritually blinded Lisu, he became the object of an intense 
demonic attack. He found himself slipping into a paralyzing 
depression and despair. He soon began to question even the very 
foundations of his faith in God. "Deeply were the foundations 
shaken in those days and nights of conflict, until Fraser realized 
that behind it all were 'powers of darkness', seeking to overwhelm 
him. He had dared to invade Satan's kingdom, undisputed for ages. 
At first, vengeance had fallen on the Lisu inquirers, an easy prey. 
Now, he was himself attacked, and it was war to the death, spiritually." 

Fraser was greatly helped in this spiritual struggle by the timely 
arrival of a magazine produced by Jessie Penn-Lewis called The 
Overcomer. "What it showed me," Fraser writes, "was that 
deliverance from the power of the evil one comes through definite 
resistance on the ground of The Cross. I am an engineer and 
believe in things working. I want to see them work. I had found that 
much of the spiritual teaching one hears does not seem to work. 
My apprehension at any rate of other aspects of truth had broken 
down. The passive side of leaving everything to the Lord Jesus as 
our life, while blessedly true, was not all that was needed just then. 
Definite resistance on the ground of The Cross was what brought 
me light. For I found that it worked. I felt like a man perishing of
thirst, to whom some beautiful, clear cold water had begun to flow. 
People will tell you, after a helpful meeting perhaps, that such and 
such a truth is the secret of victory. No: we need different truth at 
different times. 'Look to the Lord,' some will say. 'Resist the devil,' 
is also Scripture (James 4:7) and I found it worked! That cloud of
depression dispersed. I found that I could have victory in the 
spiritual realm whenever I wanted it. The Lord Himself resisted the 
devil vocally: 'Get thee behind me, Satan!' I, in humble 
dependence on Him, did the same. I talked to Satan at that time, 
using the promises of Scripture as weapons. And they worked.
Right then, the terrible oppression began to pass away." 

Toward the end of James Fraser's life, he found himself in another 
kind of spiritual conflict. He began to feel increasingly dissatisfied 
with what many considered successful ministry. He recognized 
like never before the tremendous need for true revival on the field 
and at home. His heart now longed for a powerful visitation of the 
glory of God. When God creates a fresh desire within us, we can 
always be confident that He is getting ready to move. While on 
furlough, Fraser's longings were confirmed through the opportunity 
to hear the missionary-revivalist Jonathan Goforth. Mrs. J. O. 
Fraser describes this important event in Fraser's life. "As the old 
man of God stood up to preach, an overwhelming sense of the 
presence of God filled the room, and as he spoke we were all but 
melted under the power of his words, for Goforth had been endued 
with a divine unction from God Himself and it was unmistakable. 
Fraser had heard before of the great revivals Goforth had witnessed 
in his work in China, but to hear him speak was unforgettable and 
left a deep burden on his soul. The big question on his mind was 
whether we were working with the power God had promised us." 

Again Mrs. Fraser writes of her husband's new burden, "He saw 
the teeming millions of unreached Chinese and the tiny handful of 
missionaries, but great as was the need for more missionaries 
there was an even greater need, that those of us who were out 
there should be endued with far greater power. Somehow Fraser 
was burdened because the Church both at home and abroad 
seemed to be making so little real impact on the world. He spent 
hours in prayer wondering whether we need to turn again to the 
apostles for our examples and Pentecost for our power." It was 
now the early 1930's, and Fraser was not alone in his desire for 
revival. The cry for revival was now rising from the hearts of many
missionaries and Chinese Christians alike. Suddenly God broke 
forth, raising up His hidden vessels to usher in a powerful revival in 
northern China. It was here Fraser found some kindred spirits in 
the revival laborers, Andrew Gih and John Sung of the Bethel Band.
They enjoyed powerful times of prayer together that often lasted 
into the early hours of the morning. Mr. Fraser described this time 
as his happiest experience in China. These were the glory days of 
the Shantung revival with Bertha Smith and Marie Monsen. Anna 
Christiansen of C. I. M. and Watchmen Nee of "The Little Flock" 
were also reaping revival fruit at this time. Regardless who the 
minister was, the message was essentially the same: the 
exposing of secret sin, a call to thorough repentance, the need for 
restitution and the hope of total victory through the Blood and the 
power of the Holy Spirit. 

"The Kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the VIOLENT take it 
by force." Matthew 11:12. James Fraser's life was a living example 
of this verse. Like Fraser, we must cloth ourselves in humility as 
we run to wage war in the fight of faith. Our prayers must go 
beyond mere sentimental and religious rhetoric. What we need is 
the violent groans and cries of travailing prayer! 

~SOURCE: http://www.watchword.org
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