CHARLES EWING BROWN
(Church of God)
Charles Ewing Brown began his ministry in 1895. He was an instructor in theology at Anderson College and Theological Seminary, and was, as well, the editor of the Gospel Trumpet. Apparently he was both saved and sanctified when he was still a child. In reference to his sanctification, he writes:
The greatest trouble I had in seeking sanctification was what I found later to be the major infirmity of the modern soul — doubt. Even as a child, I reasoned and waited for physical evidence of spiritual realities which cannot be known by the flesh. No scientist in his laboratory or scholar in his study has ever pressed closer to the chilling doubt of the reality of the spiritual life than I pressed as I knelt on the ground amid the awakening grass and the budding flowers while I sought to see the throne of the Eternal in the bushes, as Moses found it so many ages ago.
Down on my knees in the orchard at the foot of the hill in an agony of yearning desire and struggle with doubt, I passed along the road trampled by Elijah when he heard the strong wind, but God was not in the wind. He felt a mighty earthquake, but God was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake, a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire, a still, small voice.
There in the silence, with only the winds rustling the grass and the trees, the thunders of eternity came to me from the distance as a soft whisper of God: “It is done. This is Pentecost. This is the baptism of the Holy Spirit. This is fire and lightning and healing power. This is heart purity. This is fellowship with the gentle Jesus, the country Preacher who loved children; and this is the call to go and minister the healing of His word and works wherever you can help others.”
It has been a long time since I heard the whisper of Jesus in the old orchard on the hillside. Since then the days have stretched into years, and the years have passed into decades, and I have carried His healing message to men of nearly every race and kind around the world. The boy has become a youth; the youth has become a man; the man is past middle age and has begun to turn his face toward the setting sun. But the covenant which the farmer boy made with the High Priest of our redemption, kneeling in the grass on the hillside of southern Illinois fifty-odd years ago, holds, and shall hold, forever.
Source: “Living Flames of Fire” by Bernie Smith