What is revival? And do I need it?
The word revival conjures up different images for those who have either experienced, witnessed, or heard of previous so-called revivals. History shows us revivals that caused deep repentance stirring men’s hearts to live holy lives. Then there are those known for their outward manifestations, which brought much attention and many criticisms. Still, others were wrought with testimonies of physical healing and miracles. But what is revival? And do I need it?
One only needs to be breathing to know our world has been and continues to be in a downward spiral of fear, loss, destruction, and devastation. Our world is in a steep moral and physical decline. What makes things worse is the fact that all of it is caused by men. The condition of their hearts to fulfill their lustful desires for power and personal gain are to blame.
In the news just today, we are dealing with enemy spies, devastating chemical spills and train derailments, food processing plant fires, border security debacles, a fentanyl drug epidemic, and food prices are soaring. All of these fall on the heels of a world pandemic that has had everyone in its clutches for three years.
Revival means renewal or awakening.
I don’t care who you are. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that we need revival. We desperately need to wake up to what is really happening and understand what time it is on God’s clock. Every one of us must ask ourselves, “what condition is my heart in? We are guilty too often of pointing the finger at everyone else instead of looking to ourselves, placing blame on the institutions and governments for our plight. But the truth is that while we slept, we allowed the godless to take control. Our passivity and lack of diligence and action put us here.
Now I’m not meaning to sound hopeless. I feel so akin to Ezra while he was in prayer to God, weeping and clothes torn in anguish. Ezra 9:6-7. “O my God, I am utterly ashamed; I blush to lift up my face to you. For our sins are piled higher than our heads, and our guilt has reached to the heavens. From the days of our ancestors until now, we have been steeped in sin. That is why we and our kings and our priests have been at the mercy of the pagan kings of the land. We have been killed, captured, robbed, and disgraced, just as we are today.”
But there is hope because, with God, all things are possible. Don’t mock revival. We need revival! You will know that true revival has come to you when you no longer want your will above God’s will and when you desire to live a life pleasing to God instead of pleasing your flesh. When sin upsets you, you are experiencing a revival. If you can’t help but be involved in what God is doing, revival has come to you. When you see your money and all you own as belonging to God, that’s revival. If you can’t get enough of the Word of God and sharing the good news of Jesus Christ, then praise God, you’re in revival. I’ll say it again! WE NEED REVIVAL!
What revival isn’t
Revival isn’t waiting for someone else to motivate you to seek God. Criticizing the different moves of God isn’t revival. Taking the, “it doesn’t matter” mentality toward making a difference isn’t revival. Saying, “God knows where I’m at,” isn’t revival. Pointing the finger at everyone and everything else isn’t revival.
Revival is you. If you are not experiencing a personal revival, I challenge you to ask God for a fresh outpouring in your life and home. Start with you. If you experience revival for yourself, there won’t be any room for wondering if it’s real. You are the barometer. If your heart remains hard and calloused, immovable and not pliable, especially toward God and the things of God, then my friend, you need revival. We all need revival!
I think the lyrics of an old song by Lanny Wolfe convey the heart of revival.
There’s a voice calling me from an old rugged tree, And He whispers draw closer to Me.
Leave this world far behind,
There are new heights to climb,
And a new place in Me you will find.
And whatever it takes to draw closer to You, Lord, That’s what I’d be willing to do.
And whatever it takes to be more like You, That’s what I’d be willing to do.
Take my houses and lands. Take my dreams and my plans.
I place my whole life in Your hands. And if You call me someday,
To a land far away,
Lord, I’ll go, and Your will obey.
And whatever it takes to draw closer to You, Lord, That’s what I’ll be willing to do.
And whatever it takes for my will to break, That’s what I’ll be willing to do.
My friend, are you willing? Let it begin with us.