“Turn us again, O God, and cause Your face to shine; and we shall be saved.” - Psalm 80:3
By Kelly Cilano
Revival? No problem.
I'll sign up for extra nursery duty, revisit my list of crockpot dinners, buy extra cereal for after-church snacks, throw some coloring books in the kids' bags, and wash and lay out everybody's clothes for each night.
The older kids will finish their homework during the sermon – ideally before altar call – and my wifely/motherly revival duties will be done.
Oh, and I'll ask that unbelieving friend and that backslidden co-worker out, and I'll expect their usual polite yet firm “no way”, then settle in for great preaching and eagerly wait to see who will receive or give a word of prophecy.
Then it'll be back to life as we know it.
That's all I expect.
Not pessimistic, just routine.
Right? Church as usual, like dinner as usual?
How about apathetic?
How about lukewarm?
In reality, my expectation is to expect nothing at all. Nothing out of the ordinary.
No amazing move of God.
Is this what revival means to you?
This is notrevival.
When the paramedics revive the patient, the patient has been dead and has been brought back to life.
When we are desperate enough to ask God to step on the scene and bring us back to life, we'll have therevival He means us to have.
That revival is just around the corner, and it will come as we pray for it with expectant hearts.
That revival will not only impact us. It will impact the world.
When Moses and Aaron faced Pharaoh, even the Egyptians were affected!
Exodus 4:29-31 says: "And Moses and Aaron went and gathered together all the elders of the children of Israel; and Aaron spoke all the words which the Lord had spoken unto Moses, and did the signs in the sight of the people.
“And the people believed; and when they heard that the Lord had visited the children of Israel, and that He had seen their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshipped."
Judges 10:10 says “the children of Israel cried unto the Lord."
This is a common thread.
Each of the five revivals that we read of in the Book of Judges came as Israel cried out to the Lord, just as Israel cried out before they were delivered from Pharaoh in Egypt.
Another common thread is repentant hearts brought about by the preaching of God's Word.
In Luke chapter 3, John the Baptist begins a great revival with his message of repentance – the same message Jesus began His earthly ministry with.
The Holy Spirit convicted the people’s hearts and they repented of their sins and turned away from their evil ways.
The same thing happened on the Day of Pentecost, as Peter preached repentance from sin and three thousand souls were saved.
This revival was a slammer!
And just before they hit the streets, the disciples were in one accord in the upper room doing what?
The Spirit of the Lord entered the house like a mighty wind “and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance” (Acts 2:4).
This was such a powerful move of God that it couldn't be contained!
All 120 of those disciples ran out to the crowds in the street and began to witness, each in a different language.
All the people who had journeyed to Jerusalem from other countries to celebrate the Passover were amazed!
They each heard these uneducated men speaking in their own native language!
How could this happen?
Because of prayer.
God's people cried out to Him in full expectation of a miracle, and that's what He delivered.
The Word of God was preached and hearts were convicted of sin.
Repentance took place because the people saw their sin as God sees it: dreadfully ugly.
The Spirit of God enters the scene and, look out! Amazing things begin to happen!
The blind see, the lame walk, the deaf hear, the dead rise, and hearts are healed from their rotting sin!
Now, that's what I call revival!
We're on the cusp of a great wave that's about to break.
God is setting things up for a tremendous revival that is about to hit.
It will change this country and it will change the world.
Do you dare jump in and be a part of it?
Go to God in prayer, laying down your expectations and embracing His.
Ask to be used!
Get your heart right before God, repent, and clean house before He comes so that you can be ready to receive His presence beginning with Day One of this great revival that He's about to bring.
Pray and ask God to send His Spirit ahead of you to the people that you will witness to and bring to Him, and then prepare to follow up on those new believers.
We are all commissioned by God to be His witnesses, and new believers need mentors who will care for them.
You don't need to have all the answers; that’s God’s job.
But you do need to be a friend and caregiver.
Physical preparation is needed for revival, certainly.
But we must prepare spiritually, as well, in order for God to move.
When we are all crying out for a move of God... praying in one accord . . . the Spirit of God comes down and anything can happen!
Don’t let routine set in and apathy rob you of your expectation, your hope, and your miracle.
A great revival is coming, and God wants to use each of us for His glory.