A Thought about Revival
WEFC IS THE HOST SITE for one of these regional prayer gatherings on Monday, September 17 at 7:00 pm. For a complete schedule of prayer events, click here.
In anticipation of these 10 Days of Prayer, it has gotten me to think about revival. What is revival? And furthermore, how does revival come?
When we look at the spiritual landscape around us, we sense the need for a fresh outpouring of the Spirit of God.
Sometimes it feels like the world is falling apart. Where do we turn to for stability and hope? Politicians? Educators? Actors? Sports Heroes? All of these cultural giants we look to as a society seem to be imploding from within. If the #MeToo Movement has revealed anything to us, it is the widespread moral bankruptcy of our secular culture.
And yet, what about the church? Between the recent revelation of more widespread sexual abuse in the Catholic Church and the fall of Bill Hybels, the pastor of the largest evangelical church in our country, God seems to be bringing judgment on the church as well.
So what does this tell us about revival?
1. We are living in a time that is “ripe” for revival. Revival is a natural part of church history. We are not the first “post-Christian” culture. As God prunes and purifies the church, he brings us to a point where we turn to him.
2. Revival is not a technique. It is possible to even turn these Ten Days of Prayer into a technique – trying to manufacture a movement of God. Rather, revival is a hunger and thirst for the Holy Spirit. So revival is something that needs to start in the church. We – the church – need revival! It starts with repentance.
3. A British Pastor, Martin Lloyd Jones, wrote rather prophetically about our secular culture all the way back in 1959. In a series of lectures, he saw how the western world would be shaped by a secular worldview. Referring to the story in Mark 9 of the boy possessed by an evil spirit, he quoted Jesus who said, “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer.”
In other words, revival won’t come because of technique or professional ministry or human striving. Rather revival comes through understanding our weakness – getting on our knees – crying out for the Holy Spirit.
Revival is a movement of God. One has to wonder what God may be up to when he is stirring his people to pray.
And so…we pray!
If you want to reflect more on this, I encourage you to download the podcast “This Cultural Moment” and listen to Season 2, Episode 3.
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