This week the book I’ve chosen to review The Autobiography of George Muller. Last week we talked about The Pilgrims Progress, A Review of Pilgrims Progress, and in keeping up with finding older Christian books to edify the church this book follows Muller’s journal through the mid-19th century.
I’ve read this book slowly, like eating Cheesecake Factory desserts, it’s not often that you get something this edifying. I first heard about this book in a Paul Washer clip, HeartCry, were he said this book was the second most influential book of his life. I can see why.
The pages turn through journal entries, this man’s own words, as he walked through his life. He started out as a thief, and a wretched sinner, but where he ended should encourage every believer.
At the time of Muller’s life, street children were decidedly viewed as vermin, as such the dozen or so orphanages in London were only for those children whose parents were wealthy before they died. Muller wanted to do something for these children, but I’m getting ahead of myself…
So he started out a wretch, and his father had clearly lost his patience with his son. He decided to send him to become a minister. At the time, being a man of the cloth was seen as a noble way to make a living. It would provide a living for George, and less worry for dear old dad. However, the many distractions of school life proved to be too much for Georges wild ways. He continued to lie, cheat, and steal…until he had a fortuitous meeting. A young man who showed an apt for good behavior, who was himself backslid and hoping to have fun with George and his friends. On the other hand, George was hoping a friendship with this believer would help calm him down.
He attended a meeting with said friend, found Christ, and never looked back. He knew he couldn’t continue on the path his father had him on. As such he ceased taking any financial assistance from him. This was the beginning of a style of living George Muller would later become quite faithful in, trusting in God.
Muller didn’t trust in God the way we say it, oh you have a cold? Trust in God! No, he refused to take pew rent from his sheep, and instead would trust God to provide his needs. This autobiography follows those moments of trial, and each and every time God provided. Thus each page is a sermon on faith all on it’s own!
So how do orphanages fit in to the story? Muller built them, great orphanages capable of taking hundreds of children, without loans. They waited for every bit of financing to come in before they even began building. As his life continued on God continued to provide all the way down to the bread the children would eat.
If your faith has recently been tried, this is the book for you!