Dave Ranney eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 142 pages of information about Dave Ranney.

The night came on which I was to take the meeting—­that eventful night in my life.  I got on the platform, took the papers out of my pocket, and opened the big Bible at the chapter I was going to read, and laid out the talk just as I thought a minister might do.  I read the chapter, then we had a song, then it was up to me.

Do you know I made the greatest mistake of my life that night!  I went on that platform trusting in my own strength and not asking God’s help.  I got a swelled head and imagined I was the real thing.  But God in His own way showed me where I was standing and brought me up with a short turn.

I began reading the article written, and was getting on well, as I thought, taking all the credit myself and not giving God any.  I read three pages all right, when some one opened the window.  It was a March night, very windy, and when the window was opened something happened, and I thank God that it did.

The wind came directly toward me and took the sermon I was preaching and scattered it all over the room.  I didn’t know what to say or do.  I forgot everything that was written on the papers, and I knew if I tried to get them back I would make a fool of myself.

There was a smile on every face in the congregation.  There I stood, wishing the floor would open and let me through.  I certainly was in a box!

Just at this moment God spoke to me and said, “David, I did that, and I did it for your own good.  Now listen to me.  You were not cut out for a minister.  Just get up and tell these people how God for Christ’s sake saved you, and I’ll be with you.”

I listened to the voice, bowed my head in prayer, and it seemed as though the Lord put the words in my mouth.  I told that roomful of people of my past life and how God saved and had blessed me for four years.  We had a grand meeting and a number were saved that night, and, above all, I received one of the greatest blessings of my life.

On his return the minister said, “I hear you had a great meeting.  How did the reading go!” I told him what had happened, and he was astonished, but saw God’s hand in it, and said so.

From that night on I never wrote up anything to read to my audience, and I have spoken all over within a circle of fifty miles of New York, and even farther away, including Boston, Philadelphia, Albany, and Troy.  I tell the Bowery boys I’m what is called an extemporaneous talker.  I don’t know the first word I’m going to say when I get on my feet, but God never leaves me:  I just open my mouth and He fills it.  Praise His name!

It was a lesson to me and I have never forgotten it.


While I was sexton of the old Sea and Land Church I met among other men one who came to be a great friend.  We called ourselves pals and loved each other dearly, and yet I have never been able to bring him to Christ.  When I told him I was writing the story of my life he said he wanted to add a few lines to tell, he said, what I could not.  This is what he wrote: 

Project Gutenberg
Dave Ranney from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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