Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Revival is Brewing

Wendy Griffith - CBN News Anchor/Reporter

JAMESTOWN, VA — What does an old kettle, once owned by African American slaves, have to do with bringing revival to America?

Pastor and well-known intercessor Dutch Sheets is convinced the two are related. Sheets and others are currently taking the kettle on an east-coast tour, targeting some of America's key historical sites.

The kettle is old — about 250 years — it is black, and it doesn't look very spiritual. But lean in a little closer and you may even hear the prayers echoing inside, prayers prayed by slaves generations ago, but prayers still very potent today.

"The significance of the kettle is that God started speaking to me about synergy, of us coming together today, but also coming into agreement with past generations. He gave me Zechariah 14:20 which says, ‘The cooking pots in the Lord's house will be like the bowls before the altar.’ And He said, ‘I want this to picture the bowls in heaven that are filled with the intercession of the saints, that are poured on the earth at the right time,’" Sheets said.

The kettle actually belongs to Will Ford of Texas who met Pastor Dutch Sheets at a prayer conference in March. When Sheets spoke about how agreeing with prayers of the past could produce a "synergy of the ages," Ford was reminded of his ancestors’ kettle and how they used it as a sort of prayer shield to avoid being heard by a cruel slave master.

"If he [a slave master] heard ‘em praying, he would beat 'em because he figured they were praying for freedom," Ford explained. "So what they did was, they would take this pot into the barn late at night, turn it upside down, prop it up with a rock and they prayed for freedom, so the pot would muffle their voices."

It turns out Ford's ancestors were not praying for their own freedom, since they did not think it would happen in their lifetime, but rather for the freedom of future generations. Will and Michele Ford believe God wants to use this story to unite Christians of all races and all generations.

"Let's be one — we're already one, He [God] said we're one — and let's move forward and draw on our spiritual heritage," Will Ford said. "If I as a black man can claim Jonathan Edwards as a spiritual father to me, then why can't white people who are Christians, claim the spiritual heritage of these people that prayed underneath this pot."

Michele Ford agrees. "So, it's not just about the races, it's about us coming together uniting as one body and this pot is not an idol for us, it's just a symbol that God has left for us, something we can use," she said.

The kettle tour began on Jamestown Island, America's first settlement, with a quick history lesson and a reminder of America's biblical roots.

Historian Steven Smith said, "The essence of it, it's talking about unity, hanging together, on the basis of God's word."

Participants stopped at key sites to pray for the healing of our nation and the tearing down of spiritual strongholds. Derek Brant traveled all the way from London, England, to ask forgiveness on behalf of the English settlers who landed here nearly 400 years ago.

"We didn't come lovingly, we just kicked the Indians off their land and that breaks God's heart, and I need to be someone coming and saying I'm just so sorry for that," Brant said.

In a somber and emotional ceremony, Brant symbolically re-traced the English settlers’ arrival at Jamestown. He stepped out of the James River carrying a rock he brought from the Thames River in England. He then walked up on shore through a symbolic gate of Native American Indians, and this time, the greeting was loving.

Brant quoted the exhortation from John 13:34. "A new commandment I give unto you, that you love one another… By that will all men know that you are my disciples."

Sheets said being in Jamestown was a very "sobering experience."

"I believe we are here at the womb of the nation, and to me, I couldn't be any more thrilled. But it's very sobering to me that God would say come back here and do this," he explained. "I believe revival is coming to America. I believe because of the roots and what happened here initially, I believe the Lord told me, and I've had it confirmed through many others, that we're not going to see revival in America until we see the northeast gate open. This is a gate to the nation spiritually, and I believe this is a part of it, if we can get breakthrough here, I believe it will spread to the nation."

Brant also anticipates a move of God flowing forth from the expressions of repentance and the symbolic connection with the past. "I do believe revival will come in through this area because it was the first founding area of the scriptures coming in, the gospel coming in, so that to me is very exciting," he said.

Sheets agrees. "It's like the Lord is saying ‘breakthrough’ now, don't be coming to repent again here, there's been repentance, now begin to believe me for breakthrough, I believe we're going to see revival, soon!"

And Sheets believes that God, in his mercy, preserved this kettle, that once belonged to slaves who knew no freedom, to bring true spiritual freedom to a generation of Americans living in the last days.

The kettle tour is continuing throughout New England in places such as Philadelphia, Providence, and Plymouth. The tour is scheduled to wrap up in Boston on August 31st.

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