Some people responded, but the KGB’s presence seemed to suppress people’s response. They knew they were being watched closely and that too much religious zeal would label them as potential troublemakers — or worse. Regardless, Morris was disappointed that there did not seem to be a breakthrough during that service.
Little did he know that he had planted seeds that day that would blossom into magnificent spiritual fruit a quarter of a century later when the U.S.S.R. dissolved into various nations, communism fell apart in the region, and the Russian people sought a deeper understanding of and relationship with God.
In 1989 Morris was able to return to lead a victorious crusade. Then in subsequent trips to Russia he held crusades that attracted upwards of twenty thousand people night after night for a solid week. Each morning following a crusade a School of Ministry was conducted to train and anoint thousands of new spiritual leaders for the rebuilding country. Those newly saved and trained believers went on to reach out into their own communities and to plant thousands of new churches in the country that for so long had rejected God.
In fact, it was while ministering in Russia that he videotaped a new message titled “Proof Producers.” That message became a staple of Morris’s outreach efforts for years to come, cited by some as his legacy message. The crux of the teaching was that when a believer appropriates the power of God he can do the works that God intended him to perform, as described in John 6:28. The teaching was made into a two-hour documentary that was then aired across all ten time zones of Russia! The response was so overwhelming that the state-owned television network begged Morris to be able to run it again — twice. The airings produced so much mail that the postal service was delivering numerous, full sacks of letters to Morris’s ministry there day after day.
The Russian people were among the first to gain exposure to that-life changing message, but Morris would ultimately share that message with more than three million people across the planet, producing a continually astounding positive response from people.
Morris’s simple exercise in faithfulness — showing up in a dangerous country with no invitations to speak — turned into the first domino to fall in a series of mighty outreach events. God used the Russian experience to reinforce to Morris the importance of obedience and trusting God’s timing. His energetic ministry in Moscow’s Baptist church did not produce immediate, startling results, but neither did God’s Word return void from within that cold, dark, reticent congregation that Sunday morning in 1965. Morris’s passionate service that morning provided the single ray of light that would later enable him to reach a large body of Christ-followers in a dark and desperate nation.