Follow George Müller’s Footsteps — Robber of the Cruel Streets (Documentary Review)

Billie Jo YoumansBy Billie Jo Youmans8 Minutes

Just the Facts

This 2006 Vision Video documentary chronicles God’s transformation of a self-centered, common thief to a compassionate, courageous world-changer. Created in cooperation with the Christian History Institute, Christian Television Association, and ERF Mediaservices, Robber of the Cruel Streets: The Story of George Müller proclaims the message of this saint’s life:

You CAN take God at His Word.

Müller founded his life upon the trustworthiness of God and His Word, and the details of Müller’s life provide a portrait of the love and attentiveness of God to those who trust Him. This documentary offers a sweeping overview of God’s work on behalf of his followers—it will inspire and challenge you.

A Little Entertainment

More edu-tainment than entertainment, this documentary will lift your eyes heavenward—and may move your feet to the streets, too! It took Müller some time and God’s miraculous intervention to find his way to a meaningful life, and that’s not an uncommon reality. His father’s plans for George to obtain a good job in the church held no appeal. George set out to pursue a life of self-indulgence—deceiving and thieving as needed to reach his goals. Sent to jail for his profligate lifestyle, Müller’s respectable and frustrated father left him there for a few weeks. When his dad finally paid his debts and brought him home, he gave Müller a severe beating.

Neither the jail time nor his father’s wrath changed Müller. But the empty despair of his lifestyle served to keep him seeking for something to fill the void. When a friend shared about a Bible study he was attending, Müller asked to attend. The friend, doubtful of his motives, resisted bringing him into the group. When the friend finally agreed, Müller quickly realized this was what he had been looking for all his life. The energy he had invested in pleasing himself became sold-out devotion to Jesus Christ!

The documentary powerfully portrays how the hand of God moved Müller into the works he was created to do (Ephesians 2:10). God used Müller’s own concerns and even illnesses, his involvement with other faithful saints, and societal issues. The more Müller learned about God, the harder he pursued Him, and the more devoted he became.

“I’m fascinated by the idea of being more adventurous in trusting God,” Müller exclaimed when he learned about some saints who followed the Scriptural command to sell everything and give to the poor. Surrounding himself with other believers who confidently believed in acting on the promises in God’s Word, Müller committed to living in faith. In his circle of friends, found a wife who believed the same, and they set out together to display God’s goodness.

In Müller’s time, two significant social ills grieved his heart: the plight of England’s orphans and the deadness of faith in church attendees. Led by the Spirit as he studied and prayed, Müller got an idea: “what if he—a poor man—built an orphanage for homeless children relying solely on God’s provision?” Müller was certain believers would be encouraged and non-believers would have evidence of God’s goodness and power. With conviction and fortitude, the Müllers set out to do that—determined not to tell their needs to anyone but God.

Finances were not the only challenge, but God proved faithful in and through every challenge. Pressing on past criticism, rumors, and desperate financial challenges, the Müllers built multiple homes, suffered personal losses, and traveled the world to proclaim Christ. In Müller’s lifetime, he helped over 2,000 children and took his message to 42 countries. His legacy continues to touch lives today.

A Little Deeper Digging


Prayer and Bible study grounded the life of George Müller, and both are necessary in the life of faith. But the best way to dig deep on prayer and Bible study is simply do it!

Put prayer in your schedule. Start with a small amount of time and keep a journal. Write down what you ask God for and then be looking for the answers. Be careful to look for creative answers. You can find more tips on establishing a prayer time in our article, Friendship with Jesus: Enjoy Your Daily Bread. 

Make time for the Word of God. It’s impossible to act on His Word if you don’t know His Word. Read the Word as a personal conversation with God. As the writer of Romans says,

“For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope. (Romans 15:4).”

Faith is an active principle—more of a verb than a noun. Just as exercise strengthens our physical muscles to move our bodies, faith must be exercised to produce spiritual health and growth.

George Müller demonstrated great perseverance and courage with his acts of faith—bringing the kingdom of God to this earthly world cannot happen without those key ingredients. God will provide all that is needed. Hindsight gives the clear understanding that the challenges that came to Müller produced the purposes of God. His health struggles put him in contact with the people and inspiration that would invigorate his faith. Neighborhood complaints and the economic issues of the world offered an ideal backdrop for greater revelation of God’s glory. The same will be true in your life, too. Use your journal to record your challenges and how God miraculously employs those difficulties for eternal good!

Remember—as Robber of the Cruel Streets portrayed, Müller’s answers were seldom miracles or lights in the sky. God simply provided opportunities to pursue and supplies to utilize in response to Müller’s faith. Sold-out devotion to Christ is an investment in the Kingdom of God, backed by the riches of God. Eternal changes are sure to come when you step out in faith.

Enjoy your life of adventure and see what God will do through you!