Devotional Thoughts

George Müller’s (extra)Ordinary Faith

We recently introduced a brand new missions devotional called Daring Devotion by M. R. Conrad (available now to order). Here is an excerpt from Day 14.

On April 11, 1836, Müller accepted the first children into the orphanage. Soon, the orphanage reached full capacity, and the Lord provided funds for more buildings.

Years passed and the orphanage expanded, yet God provided even though Müller did not advertise the needs of the orphans. His journals relate account after account of God’s unmistakable provision. Müller attested, “My Lord is not limited. He knows my present situation, and He can supply all I need.”

On December 9, 1859, Müller wrote, “Today it is twenty-four years since the orphan work commenced. What has God wrought! There have been received since then altogether 1,129 orphans, and during the last two years and two months alone 469, so greatly has the work increased of late. We have now 700 orphans under our care.”

Even during Müller’s lifetime, believers would protest that they could not trust God like Müller did. However, his primary motivation for opening the orphanage was to prove that God could provide. He argued that he did not have some special gift of faith. Müller wrote, “Do not think that these answers to prayer are only for us and cannot be enjoyed by all the saints. Every child of God is not called by the Lord to establish schools and orphan houses and to trust in the Lord for means for them. Yet, there is no reason why you may not experience, far more abundantly than we do now, His willingness to answer the prayers of HIs children.”

“My faith is the same faith which is found in every believer.”

George Müller

Later, he continued, “My faith is the same faith which is found in every believer. It has been increasing little by little for the last twenty-six years. Many times when I could have gone insane from worry, I was in peace because my soul believed the truth of that promise—‘We know that all things work together for good to them that love God’ (Romans 8:28).”

Müller rested on the promises of God. Throughout Scripture, God repeatedly promises to provide for His people. David testifies in Psalm 37:25, “I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.” Paul praises the Philippian believers for their generous giving to God’s work and encouraged them with the promise that “my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19). Jesus Himself commands His people not to worry about daily needs like food and clothing but instead to “seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6:33).

Müller’s life provides an inspiring, historical example of living by faith. However, Scripture does not command Christians to live out their faith exactly as Müller did. God’s Word neither requires believers to forfeit salaries nor forbids solicitation of funds for ministry. In 2 Corinthians 9, the apostle Paul asked for monetary gifts. We need not adopt all of Müller’s methods, but we should absolutely emulate his faith!

Our priorities betray our values

Our trust should be in God, not money. If we have time to work overtime but no time to spend with God, we betray what we truly value. When fear of lacking what we need keeps us from being spiritual leaders at home and deprives us from doing what is eternally important, our most urgent lack is not physical but spiritual.

You can find the rest of this and all 31 daily readings here.