Word Of God Come Again.
Apostolic Faith Church, Bournemouth
A Short Sketch of the Life of Pastor Hutchinson - Part 1
Pastor William Oliver Hutchinson
William Oliver Hutchinson was born 11th January, 1864, Blackhill, in the county of Durham, England. He came from an old stock of Primitive Methodists.  His father and mother were devout members of the Church; his father being a local preacher, and carrying on the business of a merchant tailor, Willie often accompanied his father to his preaching appointments when he was quite a small boy, too young to remember much of what his father had to say to the people, but not too young for the Holy Spirit to stamp with good and lasting impressions in answer to the prayers of his father and mother; even in that plastic period God was beginning to give form to the framework of his life for the future.  He remembers well the family altar around which they gathered and held Divine worship every morning.  Both parents died and were buried within a fortnight of each other, when Willie was eight years old, leaving one brother and sister older than himself, and one brother and sister younger.  On returning from his father's burial, he entered the house where his mother was lying sick in bed, and overheard her say to his grandmother, “Mother, take care of my bairns.”  His young heart was already heavy with sorrow, but this was doubled in the death of her they called "Mother"; that broke away all the moorings left of their old home, and sent them adrift on life's sea as orphans, to be somewhat tossed and driven, but never beyond the bounds of God's watchful love and care.  Their mother, who had a very loving nature, and was a real guardian over her household - such an one as a boy needs and feels the loss of most - was laid in the grave of the father.  Willie, who grew up to preach the Gospel, says, “When I went back to the desolate house, and felt the loneliness of the place, I found it was not the pictures on the wall that made a home, but father and mother, who were gone.”  His heart was broken, and he often cried himself to sleep at nights.  The fresh mound of earth in the graveyard seemed about all the dear children of this godly, happy family had left to think of and look at through their tears; yes, all that they had that was God's embodiment of love and blessing to them was lying voiceless and still beneath the sod.  But a covenant keeping God was at hand in that dark hour of His mysterious providence to work out, in His wonder working way, all things for good in the lives of the children, and turn their earthly loss to an eternal gain.
Boyhood Life
The children were scattered.  Willie went with an uncle and aunt for two years, when the latter died, and he was taken by his grandparents - on his mother's aide - at Blanchland, in the county of Northumberland, where he spent about ten years of his life.  His grandfather was a lowly, quiet, gentle old man, and his grandmother an active Christian woman both Primitive Methodists.  What he felt most was the goodness of God in providing a home for him.  He came to look upon Blanchland as his real boyhood home, and to thank God for the influence thrown around him in those important character building years.  His grandfather had a general merchandise shop in the village, and kept horses and carts to carry on his business.  Willie was fond of animals, and had the usual boy experiences in handling them.  On one occasion he was galloping a horse in a pasture, when he was caught by a limb of a tree in the neck, but not seriously hurt.  After he left school, at fourteen years of age, he was often sent with a horse and cart to bring a load of goods across the moor from the railroad station, eight miles away.
When he was about sixteen, there was a severe winter of heavy snowstorms, and the village ran short of flour.  He was very brave, desiring to relieve the situation and make a record for himself, which was quite natural for a youngster, looking forward with a desire of doing good and being something in the world.  His heart responded to the need of the villagers, and he proposed to undertake the sixteen miles trip across the moor to the station and back.  It meant a cold, lonely drive, with no dwellings along the way where he could find shelter in case of emergency.  He took old Tom, a large draught horse, in a cart without any body, that it might be lighter, and so that the snow in the drifts would not pack up in front, thus making it easier for the horse, but worse for himself riding exposed on the axle.  He went forth with a strong, cold wind blowing, that was drifting the snow, and making it a very bad time to be out.  When he reached Dead Friars Hill, with a long, steep climb, he found the storm had increased into a fierce blizzard, so that he could hardly get his breath.  The roads were getting heavier from the drifting snow, and the horse could hardly pull through; the undertaking looked very disheartening, and almost hopeless.  Old Tom stopped and looked back at him, as much as to say, “Are you going any further?” He was by this time almost overcome by the cold, but getting around in front of his horse, he stamped about and warmed himself in the animal's breath.  He thought of turning back, but remembering the need of the villagers, he pressed on to the station, and succeeded in getting home with two sacks of flour - 560 pounds.  The last two miles were most trying and perilous, as the snow had drifted high in the roads; the horse plunged along, often lying on the snow to get his breath and strength for another desperate plunge forward.  On his arrival he was the hero of the village; the people wondered that he ever got back.  Next morning the snow had drifted fifteen to twenty feet deep in parts of the road he had travelled, and the peril of the trip he had made was more apparent.  Hearts were raised in thankfulness to God for his safe return, and that he suffered no serious results from the exposure.
Early Christian Experiences
Revival meetings broke out among the Wesleyans when Willie was about seventeen years of age, and he gave his heart to God.  He had a very conscious experience of the Lord's indwelling presence, and entered into the usual Christian activity of a young Church member.  The presence of God in the revival brought great fear upon all the people in the surrounding district, and led to the young people of Blanchland being invited to go the the adjoining villages and hold meetings for the people in their chapels.  Willie was selected to go with them, as one of two or three who took the lead in the meetings. Many gave themselves to the Lord, and the youthful ministers were greatly encouraged and blessed, as well as the congregations.  Sometimes they made the trips in carts, but more often walked miles to the chapels, over hills and through vales, in both good and bad weather.
There was a very saintly old man, practically blind from breaking stones on the road, by the name of John Baron, of Ruffside, who had a great influence on Willie for good after his conversion.  He would often ride along in his donkey-cart, with such a movement of the Spirit of God upon him, singing and praising God, that he awakened and stirred all the countryside around.  He was full of that life that overflowed.  It seemed as if his old donkey, the cart, and himself were all dancing in the road from the joy and glory of the Lord that was in him.  The tears would run down his cheeks, and his body would tremble, and people were strongly impressed with the reality of the indwelling God in His temple, and that in a very lowly temple of clay, even the old stone breaker's body.  He would sing the old hymns and choruses, and well does the boy of that day, the subject of this sketch, remember how he would let his soul out in the following hymn:
My heart is fixed, eternal God,
Fixed on Thee:
And my unchanging choice is made -
Christ for me!
He is my Prophet, Priest, and King,
Who did for me salvation bring;
And while I've breath I mean to sing -
"Christ for me!"

Let others boast of heaps of gold,
Christ for me!
His riches never can be told,
Christ for me!
Their gold will waste and wear away,
Their honours perish in a day,
My portion never can decay
Christ for me!

At home, abroad, by night, by day,
Christ for me!
Where'er may lead my pilgrim way,
Christ for me!
Him first and last, Him all day long,
My strength and shield, my fortress strong,
This evermore my hope and song -
"Christ for me!"

Now who can sing my song, and say:
"Christ for me!
My life and truth, my light and way,
Christ for me!
Then here's my heart, and here's my hand,
We'll form a daring, happy band,
And shout aloud throughout the land -
"Christ for me!"
It was his delight to break out and sing the second verse when gentlemen shooters passed with their fine carriages, horses, and hunters' trappings.  At one time, as Willie was passing by his house, he had occasion to stop, and found old John sitting by the fireside.  “Ah, Willie!” cried the old man in a soft, gentle, holy tone and manner that was touching indeed.  The next thing he knew, “old John” had him down on his knees, and slipping his hands upon his head, he offered up a prayer for him in his old, feeble voice, that wrapped Willie about in the Spirit of God, and carried him heavenward with a power and meaning never to be forgotten.  Pastor Hutchinson believes that this experience he had of the old stone breaker's hands on his head, and prayer for him, was the setting of him aside by the Holy Spirit to the work whereunto he was called in life.  “Lord, bless Willie!  Lord, bless Willie!” still falls in soft and gentle tones as a Divine benediction out from the past.  The poured out blessing of the old man s heart emptied itself into a heart that God had open ready to receive it; it abides with him today.
After this experience, there came to Willie an unusual spiritual awakening, and he had a vision of the future, in which he stood on the moor, near a little plantation of trees in the vicinity of a place called Paradise - that got its name from an old man and woman who lived there, called Adam and Eve - all of which at this time stood out very distinctly before him in all its features; and he marvels that it should so remain with him to this day.  He then saw that he was to have something special to do with the gifts of the Holy Spirit; that he was going to preach, and that these things - the gifts - would rest inside of him.  We know how the surroundings, and everything associated with them, are vividly impressed on the mind of one of God's important events or visions in life.  In Jacob's vision at Bethel, “he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place.  This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven,” and he set up a stone.  In Peter's vision, he was on the housetop - hungry, as they were preparing food below.  Although one is taken up with the revelation, the outside things become memorial stone before the soul - it is the place of God's revealed will.  Paul's memorial stone was three days blindness, in which he ate no food, and was led by the hand.  The word spoken to Jacob on the above occasion is one of the Scriptures the Holy Spirit fastened on our brother in his early days: “I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of.”  He says that some of the ramblings of Jacob were in him, but that he had his Peniel, and God brought him through into his promised inheritance.
Becomes A Shepherd
About this time he became impressed by the shepherds who came to the village in their rough garb, with soles of boots projecting at the toes, copper capped for going through the heather, double-peaked caps, with a Scotch plaid shawl thrown around their shoulders, with one end sewn together, in which to carry a lamb needing special care.  With two dogs and a stick each, they made quite a pilgrim-like appearance.  Willie thought he would like to be a shepherd, so he engaged himself to a farmer outside the village who had a large number of sheep.  The farm had miles of moor attached to it, with no walls or hedges; the sheep were trained by herding, to stay on their own ground.  He had two years of this work as a lad, which was a valuable experience.  During this time, God talked to his heart, as He did to David's, when caring for his father's sheep on the hills of Bethlehem.  The Scriptures would come to him about the Good Shepherd, and often he would pray and weep on the moor, thinking of the Lord.
Once he had a great fright out on the highest hill in a thunderstorm; the ground shook under him, and he promised the Lord he would serve Him faithfully if He would only spare his life.  This experience was similar to Martin Luther's in his early life: on his way to Erfurt, in 1505, he and a friend were struck to the ground in a thunderstorm; the scene was so terrible as to cause Luther to make a vow to Almighty God, that if his life was spared he would forsake the world, and devote himself wholly to His service, which at that time meant to enter a monastery.  Some would say that he broke his vow when he left the Church - but not so; he carried out that vow, that had in it a wholehearted purpose to walk in the light God gave him.  These vows to God, or covenant relations with Him, are on many of His people today, and should be held sacred, and faithfully carried out.  “When thou vowest a vow unto God, defer not to pay it; for He hath no pleasure in fools: pay thou that which thou hast vowed.” (Eccles 5:4).
Called To Be A Soldier
Willie stopped a week or two with an uncle at Consett, who was in the ironworks.  Feeling very unsettled one night, he went out alone on the railroad track and prayed earnestly to God for guidance. At this time he heard one speak to him that he took at first to be an angel, saying, “Go to be a soldier,” as plain as any human being could speak - so much so that he opened his eyes to see if there was anybody around; yet reflecting, he knew it was the voice of God, spoken to the inner man; it was that word in which the Spirit entered into him, which one knows is always the revealed will of God.  He had never thought of being a soldier, and after this, his elder brother, whom he went to see, told him he had not the courage to make one.  On going into the town where his brother lived, he met an army recruiting officer, who he expected would speak to him about joining the army, but he did not.  At last he felt compelled to speak to the officer, and, before he scarcely knew it, he enlisted in the Grenadier Guards, being then nineteen years of age.  He was taken through the usual drill, and stationed in London, where great interest was taken in the guardsmen by Christian friends.  He went to hear Lord Radstock, a wonderful Christian man, a preacher of the pure, simple Gospel of Christ, and Mr. Denham Smith, and many others.  Then came Moody and Sankey's visit to London, when the city was wonderfully shaken by their great revival, William took advantage of these meetings, and was greatly blessed under Moody's preaching and Sankey's singing.
Putting On New Strength
But the time came when he found himself growing cold.  He was not confessing Christ by reading his Bible, kneeling and praying in the barracks before his comrades as he felt he should have been doing. Willie was struggling with conviction on this line; the Spirit was faithfully pointing out his duty, but he lacked courage, and needed help to perform the part of a Christian soldier.  He was very desirous to hear the preacher, Charles Haddon Spurgeon, of the Metropolitan Tabernacle.  He went, and was given a seat in the first gallery, in the middle of the front row, back of one of the great pillars, so he had to lean forward a little to see Mr. Spurgeon, who, on his platform, was about on a level with him.  Willie was greatly impressed with the large congregation, the great tiers of galleries one above another, and the rows of seats, and the people in them.  He was figuring them up in a random way, trying to tell how many people were in this division of seats, and how many in that.  Mr. Spurgeon took as his text, “Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.”  He made his opening remarking on the subject, and then, in his clarion voice, repeated his text with great emphasis, in which the Holy Spirit cried out through him in a special manner, “Awake thou!” and paused, and then again, “Awake, thou that sleepest - you sitting behind that pillar!” - at the same time pointing his finger toward Willie.  While Willie was preparing for a soldier's life, this was the first bomb that fell in his camp; it was from heaven's battery, and produced consternation.  The shot struck, and about shattered him; he said it was real palpitation of the heart he had.  He was chagrined and confused in feelings; his first thought was that his uncle had been to London, and told Mr. Spurgeon all about him, which was the farthest thing possible for his uncle was 250 miles away.  This was a great moment of awakening and renewal of his whole life and heart to God.  He went out at the close of the service fully determined to confess Christ before his comrades, and in haste he made his way back to the barracks.  There he met the men, and told them his purpose to live fully unto the Lord, and he asked each one of them if they had any objection to him praying with them.  None of them objected; but Willie was a little afraid of one man, who was the champion pugilist of the regimen, noted for creating brawls and general disturbances. The men were afraid of him, and Willie did not know when he knelt in prayer what he might do, probably throw his boots at him.  One man, a kind of a chum of Willie's, left the room; our young brother's new attitude for Christ was too much for him.  Willie knelt and prayed; it was a hard task for him, and he hardly knew what he said.  The power of God fell in the place, and when he arose from praying, the fighting man called out with his fist in the air, challenging anybody to touch Willie.  This experience was noised around and it was said that they had “a praying chap in the company.”  The result was that in due time about half the regiment of seven hundred was brought under conviction, and about a quarter converted.  Many gentlemen and ladies, in the neighbourhood of the barracks, opened their houses and made special efforts in meetings to bring the soldiers to Christ.  On a later occasion, when he knelt by his cot at Aldershot, some thirty-five men were in the barrack room, gambling, smoking, and swearing. He had read John 3:36, “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life,” when a touch of the Spirit came upon him, and filled with joy over this Scripture, he knelt down by his bed to give thanks.  A man in the opposite corner from where he was came right across cots and tables, and sat down by his side, saying, “You have reminded me of my mother, and my promise made to her before she died, to meet her in heaven.”  He was apparently resolved to turn to Christ, and many others were put under conviction, and gave themselves to the Lord.
About this time, December 24th 1888, he married Miss Ada Cooper, a good, Christian young woman, who from the first became a great help to him in his life, and a great assistance by her singing in the meetings.  She has proved herself to be a very devoted wife.  When her husband, with his regiment, was sent to the West Indies for a year, she refused to remain behind, although she had a baby a month old, was was herself not really in a fit condition to travel.  With a perseverance characteristic of her nature, she overcame all obstacles in the way and went, facing all the hardships and inconveniences with a sacrificing spirit of true love, in a union they knew God had formed.  Shortly after her marriage, Mrs. Hutchinson was chosen by the Wesleyan Chaplain General to be in charge of the Soldiers Home at Buckingham Palace Road, London.
At one time, after William was made sergeant, and located in London, he and other sergeants were invited and attended a large gathering of Wesleyan ministerial students in their church at Westminster. The Wesleyan Chaplain General was present, and young Hutchinson was asked to speak, following another sergeant.  The power of God was on him and he had freedom, in spite of being intimidated somewhat by the large body of young ministers present, and his being pulled up from his seat to speak, where he sat by his young wife whom he had recently married.  At the close, someone suggested to the Chaplain General that the young soldier should be released from the army to enter the college to train for the ministry.  “No,” he replied; “he is of more use where he is.”  Considering these experiences, it does not seem strange that the Lord said to him, “Go to be a soldier.”  God had a purpose in it, not only to give him a much needed disciplinary course, but to open the way for him to hear the great preachers and evangelists of the day, and to use him in the army to save souls for whom Jesus had died.  During his service in the army, he took advantage of a voluntary course in school for six years, and obtained a certificate, that not only enabled him to enter higher ranks, but also helped to prepare him for the calling he is now in.
Marvellous Deliverances From Death
The soldier Hutchinson was sent to the Boer War, South Africa, in March, 1900.  He arrived at Capetown in a troopship early one morning.  As he looked out he could see the tableland, and realised that a new field of experience lay before him.  Pondering over his position, it seemed that a voice especially loud said within him, “Thou oughtest not to have had the sword thou art carrying, but thou wouldest have had the sword of the Lord hadst thou been in My perfect will.”  He had had the opportunity of being released from the army before this, and of entering into spiritual work, but failed to accept it.  He realised now that all he could do was to look to the Lord and go through.  He knew he had the continual prayers of his wife and two children for his preservation, and he came to feel that they were his salvation from death on several occasions.  He endured many hardships in long marches and exposures on the veldt, in shortage of food and clothing on account of the supply convoys failing to reach them.  On one occasion he had the sole of one of his boots torn loose, exposing his toes, when the army came into action with the enemy on the top of a hill.  A general told him to run for the mounted men at a time when the enemy were firing at them with a big gun from a distance.  As he was running, he struck his exposed toe on a stone, causing him to double up, gripping his toe to deaden the pain.  His stop was only momentary, but it saved his life.  A shell burst just ahead of him, killing about a dozen sheep.  Pieces of sheep went flying through the air, and a piece of shrapnel, about a pound weight, just missed his head.  Had he not met with the accident, he would have been at the spot where the shell burst; he saw and recognised God's deliverance.  At another time, with his men, he was covering the retirement of a big gun under the fire of the enemy.  His men, going ahead in advance of him with the gun, cleared themselves from their exposed position, and he took refuge behind a slab stone that was hit by a shell, but was not broken; his life was saved.
One night he was out with two soldiers, as a visiting patrol to the army outposts.  There came on a terrific thunderstorm and great darkness, and they could not see where they were going, and so laid down on the ground.  Soaked with rain, he got very cold, and rose and walked two and fro, forming a little beat of four or five steps which he counted, back and forward, keeping himself on the same spot by a little stone he touched with his foot at one end of this beat.  When daylight came on suddenly, as it does in that land, he saw that the small stone he had played with in the darkness, touching it with his foot through the night, was on the edge of a high precipice, with jagged rocks so far below it made him giddy to look down upon them.  He was dazed at the discovery of the peril he had been in.  Verily, an angel stood there in the darkness, a barrier holding him back from taking the fatal step beyond that stone.  He had other narrow escapes and interesting experiences that cannot here be recorded.  After eighteen months in this campaign, he broke down in health, and was sent home.
Taken Out Of The Army
Hutchinson had advanced in the army from one position to another until he became staff-sergeant, and would probably have gone further, had not the Lord stepped in, as he felt, and stopped his further promotion.  He sees now that had he gone farther, the plan of God in his life would have been spoiled; for he doubtless would have been held subject to army orders, and have been taken into the present great war with others of his old comrades.  But God has a way of doing things, of so cutting those of His choice off and out from what He has finished with in their lives, that they cannot very well be joined on to it again.  He let our brother break down completely in his body, and be invalided home as hopelessly incurable, which in army regulations means a clear cut off for life.  He returned to civilian life, thrown on God as his only hope for the lengthening of his years and further usefulness in the world.
When he was in the Netley Military Hospital, before his discharge from the army, he sat one day outside, with his back to the hospital and his face towards Bournemouth - thirty miles away - and the Spirit spoke within him, saying, “I have a place for thee over there.”  He did not know what the word meant, as he had never been to that part of the country.  He now sees he is in the locality God had in store for him.
After quite a period of rest, having gained a little in health, it was necessary that he should find suitable employment, as he had his wife and two daughters to provide for, one of them very delicate, who, the doctors said, could not live.  He went to the North of England, where he held meetings, and a town councillor got him a position as an officer in the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. They sent him to London, to take a course of training, and, remarkable to say, he was then sent as Inspector to Bournemouth district.  Thus the Lord brought him to the place He had spoken to him about, without it costing him a penny for travelling.  He spent three years in the Society, looking after children. The nature of his occupation afforded him opportunity of evangelistic work, in which he saw many conversions.  During the time, he brought himself into prominence in the work, handling some serious cases requiring legal action.
Called To The Christian Ministry
At last, however, he felt that God was calling him to give himself entirely to the preaching of the Gospel, and he stepped out of the Society by faith, believing God would supply his needs.  Before he went out in this way, God was preparing him for the step to be taken; things were not just as God wanted them.  The Spirit of God was moving on him when in prayer with many deep heart-searchings. Outside of the army, he came to find himself without that practical experience necessary for civil family life; it was indeed a new path for him.  He invested in the house furnishings on the instalment system, which he soon came to see was not a wise thing to have done.  The payments were difficult to meet, with unexpected claims on his income, so that he was much pressed and embarrassed.  Also he had had sums of money from relations in early life that he had never been able to pay back, and being in the army, he was hardly expected to pay.  Customarily, it was not thought much about, either by himself or those who loaned him the money.  But he was startled one morning, when in prayer, to have the Lord say to him, “Pay your debts.”  He got to thinking of all it could mean, and figured up nearly £100 that was necessary to clear him.  The Lord let the awfulness of debt come upon him until he was greatly humiliated and terribly ashamed; he prayed earnestly to God for deliverance.  He had been getting up early of mornings for several years to read his Bible and pray.  Now that he got on to this old debt trouble, he was desperate, lying on his face sobbing.  His obligations that the Lord brought before him looked black and got blacker to him.  Then he prayed whomsoever the Lord sent to deliver him might not ask about the different sums he owed, and how he got into such trouble.
Some two or three weeks passed, and the fiery heat God made of his debts having burned through him, and done its work of refining, died down, when one morning early came a knock at the door, and there appeared a gentleman with a frock coat and a high hat, who was practically a stranger to him.  He asked permission to come in, as he wanted to speak to him.  He entered, and both being seated face to face, the visitor said that while he was praying that morning, the Lord said to him, “Go over and set Hutchinson free”; he knew by the way the word came that it had reference to debts.  There was a moment's pause, with much feeling in it, and before our brother could speak, the man raised his hand as though to stop some sorrowful confession, saying, “I do not want to know how you got into trouble.  My business is to set you free.  All I want to know is the sum of what you owe.”  He told him to make out a list, and give him the total, and he would draw the amount out from the bank; which he did.  No one can tell the feelings of joy and thankfulness that Brother Hutchinson and his wife had before the Lord, that He should shoulder this burden from them, and carry it off to be seen no more.  They had new light given them through experience, and they set themselves to walk in it, knowing it was better to endure any kind of condition of things, and, if necessary, to eat a crust of bread and drink water, than to have a burden of debt.  This experience has been used of the Lord to help many in their struggle in life.
Out In Soul Saving Work
After this experience, the Holy Ghost came in a special manner and rested upon him.  Often he would speak to individuals about their souls, and they would come under conviction, and be saved, especially professing Christians without any experience; and many were wakened and stirred to new activity in the Lord.  On one occasion he was cycling through the country, and turning into a bye-lane, he took a shortcut to a village called Little Hailed, in the county of Dorset.  He met a man coming out of a ploughed field, riding a horse, and leading another.  He spoke to him about his soul, and found out afterwards that it led to his salvation.  He then passed a small farmhouse and saw a young woman standing at the window, and the old father in the barnyard with the cattle.  He called out from the road to the young woman, saying, “The Blood of Jesus Christ, God's Son, cleanseth us from all sin.”  Having a strong movement of the Spirit on him, he felt the word went home to her heart.  This caused quite a stir around.  He went on, and spoke to an elderly women, who had her family about her soul; she was smitten with the conviction of sin.  Just at that time, two young men who belonged to the Primitive Methodist Church in the community who had been praying that God would give a revival - moved by God in Faith, went to the chapel, opened the door and lighted a fire, and looked to God to send the people in. The chapel was in sight of this middle aged woman our brother had spoken to; she saw the smoke coming out of the chimney, and went to enquire if there was a meeting.  She opened the door, walked in, and threw herself down before God, and was saved.  The young woman he had met, and some others, came also to the chapel, and were converted, without any meeting being announced.  When Brother Hutchinson reached the village, his bicycle broke down, and he looked about for a conveyance to take him to the railroad station, six miles away, as he had to get back to a meeting that night.  He was directed to a carrier, who had a shop attached to his house, which he entered and made arrangements for his journey to the station.  The carrier called to his man to get a pony and trap ready.  In the meantime our brother was invited into the kitchen to have some refreshment, and found himself in the midst of a large family of seven or more children.  As the wife was making ready, he preached to them about Jesus.  God's Spirit moved in a strong, convicting way upon the household.  He then got into the trap with the driver, a young man about nineteen, and preached to him all the way to the station, where he had but a moment to say goodbye, and asked that he would let him know when he gave his heart to the Lord.  When this young man returned home, he said to his master, “It was a strange man I had to drive to the station.  He told me I was to let him know when I have given my heart to the Lord.”  The Holy Spirit had been working with the family while he was away, and they all broke down and gave themselves to the Lord.  Our brother received a letter the second day afterwards from the master of the house, saying, “Dear Sir, My man told me that you want to know when he gave his heart to the Lord. He has done so; I, my wife and children also have done so.  Will you come over and preach to us?”  He went; the Primitive Methodist Church was open, a free hand was given, and many souls were won to the Lord.
Brother Hutchinson at this time was a member of the Bournemouth Baptist Church.  On one occasion there was a shortage of Sunday-school teachers, and the superintendent - now a JP in Bournemouth - asked him to take a class of grown-up young women.  He did so: and breaking away from the lesson of the day, he talked with them on the subject of the Holy Ghost, and the Lord moved, insomuch that the superintendent said to him, “I do not know what you were speaking about, Mr. Hutchinson, but it certainly has had a great effect on the class you took.”  He felt thankful for the approbation.  Then he was practically put in charge of the mission attached to the church.  Later, he took meetings for the Baptists, Congregationalists, and Primitive Methodists.  During the last two series of special meetings, 100 conversions were recorded in one, and 130 in the other.  They were mostly young people.  At one time about fifty rose in a body and gave themselves to the Lord, praying and waiting on God until they had the Holy Spirit's witness of salvation.  After this, he thought of going out independently into evangelistic work.  He came in contact with the late Reader-Harris (King's Counsel), of the Pentecostal League, and received great blessing in the teaching of a clean heart before God.  This experience he then took to be the baptism of the Holy Ghost.  Later, he came to see that the baptism should be accompanied by the speaking in tongues.
Led Out Independently By Faith In God
At this time he found himself greatly hampered by strong currents which ran counter to the workings and leadings of the Holy Ghost in his life, and he became conscious that he was not only to withdraw from the Society he was in, but saw he was to leave the church also.  He felt strongly constrained of God to take this step, which was an additional test of his faith.  His heart was yearning for service, and he was willing to take any position so long as he knew the Lord was having His way with him.  When he came out of the church, he asked the Lord, if it was pleasing to Him to do so, to give him a little token of money in the first meeting he held as a seal of His approval, and that he might feel assured that his needs would be supplied.  This meeting was in a skittle alley.  The Lord was present in the little word given.  At the close, a young man insisted on walking home with him, and, parting, placed a gold sovereign in his hand.  Brother Hutchinson entered his home rejoicing, saying to his wife, “I have got the token!”
He expected now to receive calls for evangelistic work, but they never came, and he was shut up in prayer for nine months.  During this time he was asked to assist in the pastorate of a Baptist Church, with a weekly wage, but having stepped out by faith, he declined, not purposing to come into bondage again, feeling assured the Lord had led him out and given him freedom of action, and that He had a special purpose in doing so.  The pastor and his wife from the church visited him, bringing what power they could to bear upon him to get him back again, saying, good-naturedly of course, yet meaning seriously enough, that if he did not work, neither should he eat.  His course brought upon him severe persecution and trials; in fact, God was proving him, whether he would stand on the ground he had taken; and at the same time He gave him the chance to join himself back to the "old" he had left.  But no, he had left the “old” forever, and he stood firm, and proved that God could pay a man for labouring in prayer as well as in preaching.  Sometimes the coal would run down to the last bucketful, and he would look up and breathe out from his heart, “Lord, it is time we had some more coal.”  The coalman did not fail to come before the last shovelful was gone, enquiring if Mr Hutchinson lived there, that he had half-a-ton of coal for him.  His wife would answer, “Yes, he lives here; but we have not ordered any coal.  Who sent the coal?”  And the man would say, “I was told not to tell you.”  So it was when they came to the last of the food: the Lord was at hand with a fresh supply.  Sometimes a cheque would come, or the gift of a suit of clothes, etc..  One day of a heavy rain, when a fierce gale was blowing, chimneys coming down, and slates off the buildings it was considered a day unfit for anyone to be out - there was a need in the house of financial help.  Brother Hutchinson went to the organ, and began to sing and praise God.  When he stopped, there was a jingle of money falling on the floor through the letter slot in the door.  He arose, and went to see what was on hand.  Looking out, he saw the form of a woman disappearing in the storm.  The needs of the day were supplied regardless of the weather conditions.
During the nine months a tremendous burden of prayer was upon him.  The spirit of the Welsh Revival, 1904-5, had been abroad in the land.  He had visited South Wales when the fire of God was falling, and, in a revival meeting, had a vision of three balls of fire, one above another, increasing in size, upwards over his head.  The smallest one was close upon him, and the Spirit spoke within him, saying that this first ball had to do with the gift of tongues.  He heard that the Holy Ghost had fallen in America, 1906-7, and people were speaking in tongues, in all of which the Holy Ghost was moving, pressing his soul heavily with strong cries after God.  The burden on him was unexplainable, as it often is when God is working in the spiritual; but bound up in it was a cry for the baptism of the Holy Ghost, the same as God gave to the disciples at Pentecost.  There came a clearly manifest movement of the Holy Ghost in his body; his tongue began to move with a new action that he had never experienced before.  (See Pastor Hutchinson's experience in his tract, The Baptism of the Holy Ghost with Signs Following.)
He had an invitation to go to Sunderland at Whitsuntide, 1908, to attend an International Pentecostal Conference.  When he arrived, he found many people assembled from different nations, and they were rejoicing in that they had been baptised with the Holy Ghost, and had received the sign of tongues.  While kneeling in one of the meetings, the Holy Ghost spoke through our brother in tongues. This was a very remarkable meeting, with people of many languages and nations speaking in tongues as they did in the early Church.  No word can tell the holy, blessed sense of God that brings in heavenly love and sweetness at times over the soul of saints living pure lives, wholly devoted to God.  The Holy Ghost, in His dove-like brooding and movement in the hearts and lives of the children of God, is beyond the conception of the natural mind to grasp; and the bonds of brotherhood in Christ are wonderfully real and precious.  Glory to God for the victory of the Christ over all flesh, and His power to make us all one - even people from every nation and clime.  He asked the Lord to give him further proof, if he was still to continue in the course he was in - which was, indeed, a very trying one - by letting some ordained minister lay his hands on his head in prayer for him, without his being asked to do so.  On the last day of the Conference, he went to the vicarage, to bid goodbye to the Rev. A. A. Boddy, of the Church of England, who was the convener of the Conference.  As they parted, Mr. Boddy raised both hands and placed them upon his head, and prayed that God would bless him, and make him to stand.  He returned to Bournemouth, where some of the brethren gathered around him in his house, in a cottage meeting, and the first person he laid his hands on received the Holy Ghost and spoke in tongues.  Several more baptisms with signs of tongues quickly followed, all having been prepared for this experience in the cottage meetings held in his house.  Brother Hutchinson had at last come so far along in the way of the Lord's leadings that he could rejoice and sing,
“Now I have found the ground wherein
Sure my soul's anchor may remain.”
We can now see why he was led out of the old denominational lines of work, and why he was given no evangelistic calls.  The Lord knew this experience would never be received by them, that new wine could not be put into old wineskins (Matt 9:17).  It was but the beginning of what was to enlarge itself with our brother into the fullness of God's Latter Rain Outpouring.
Praying For A Hall
For a time brother Hutchinson had been praying for a building of his own to hold meetings in; he went through the usual trying ordeals that are common in an experience of this kind.  One day, going out into the garden, when he was waiting and looking upward to God to give light and move on his behalf in the matter, it seemed that a host of angels came down around him, with such a heavenly influence that he was assured that his prayers for a place of worship were answered.  He rejoiced, saying, “Lord, give me a building to myself, where Thou canst have Thy way, and no man can stop Thee working.”  Soon after this, he went out on a vacant piece of ground that he thought he would like to have for a hall, and he asked the Lord to give him this ground, which lay back of vacant lots that fronted two streets. He had nine pence (eighteen cents) in his pocket and no one to look to and talk to about it but God.  He felt led to rent the ground for £3 per annum, (£1 is nearly $5.  Multiply pounds by five, and this will give approximate amount in dollars.) on a ninety-nine years lease; the ground being valued at £100 for a freehold title.  Unasked for, the owner on making out the lease, put in the clause, “With option to purchase in eight years.”  This important clause was later seen to be the hand of God, and had great meaning in it, but Brother Hutchinson did not think of it at the time.
The first gift toward the Hall was £30; then came £70.  In depositing the money, Brother Hutchinson told the bank manager he was starting to build a Gospel mission hall with it, and he became interested in the venture.  Brother Hutchinson bought bricks and mortar, and paid for labour, as far as the £100 would go.  The walls were about four feet high when he ran out of money, and he walked around them, tempted by Satan with the Scripture that he had commenced to build without counting the cost, and that people would laugh at him for not being able to finish.  The bank manager, seeing his earnestness, looked at the ground and the work he was doing, and straightway gave permission for him to draw money from the bank to go on with and finish the building.  But before it was necessary to draw any money, £150 was sent him by a gentleman, with strict orders that his name should not be mentioned. Thus the Lord had a double deliverance for him - one in the bank, and one in Himself.  He let the first be offered expressing the confidence of man, and then set it aside, bringing in His own gratuitous support. Another £100 followed this.