Back in the Days of the Old Baptist Tabernacle in Danville, Virginia

I have had the wonderful privilege of knowing and experiencing old-time gospel ministry. When I read about some of the revivals in church history, it has always occurred to me how fortunate I am to be among those who will never need to wonder what revival is like.

When my father died in 1966, I was a junior in high school and had little direction for my life, so I could have ended up anywhere. But in God's care, my mother moved from Roanoke to the old Baptist Tabernacle in Danville, Virginia. The move uprooted me from my circle of friends and athletic hopes for my senior year, but put me in the midst of a work of God that became the foundation for anything else God might later do in my life.

The old “Tabernacle” could hardly hold the Sunday School attendances or the crowds that came for the preaching there three times a week. Sometimes, even on Sunday evenings, ushers would line chairs down the aisles. I also remember people standing along the walls at the back and down the sides of the large auditorium. The music was not worldly loud or sensational, but sanctified and appropriate. There were no high tech sights and sounds of today's entertainment world, no performances or standing ovations, but only the man of God calling us to Heaven and to holiness through Christ, and perhaps a white-haired old saint or two quietly weeping and waving a white handkerchief. How privileged I was to be there!

God has used me several times through the years to birth revival ministries which have had a tiny resemblance to my own earlier experience at the Tabernacle. I have a hope - maybe it is only a dream - that God will once again raise up ministries which will provide the opportunity for broken lives to experience the work of grace in the way I experienced it as a young man many years ago.

"I remember the days of long ago; I meditate on all your works and consider what your hands have done. I spread out my hands to you; my soul thirsts for you like a parched land." - Psalm 143:5

Don Loy Whisnant/Journey Notes 10A08