Our nation needs more than Republicans and Democrats, a new law, a new deal–it needs a spiritual revival. On a personal level, we need more than a spiritual band-aid as well.
We need personal revival.
The heart of the problem is our hearts. God wants them. He and he alone deserves lordship over them. We have wandered, and God is calling us back. If we get our hearts into the right place before God, the rest of life will fall into its proper place.
How do we have a personal revival?
- Develop and enlarge a hunger for God and God alone.
Revival is not a means to an end (economic prosperity, personal satisfaction, physical health). Revival is when all that matters is God–his glory, his will, his ways.
- Personally turn away from the “God hunger quenchers” in your life.
It is not time for negotiation, it is a time for abnegation. Evil things in our lives must go; good things that blunt our desire to seek God must go also. The Lord says through the prophet Isaiah: Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which does not satisfy? Listen diligently me,…Incline your ear, and come to me; hear, that your soul may live… (Isaiah 55:2-3)
As we read of former times of revivals, we will read of measures and manifestations that seem extreme in retrospect. But we do not look backward to history, we look to the Lord and his holy commands. When the times demand revival, we should not do anything that would quench God’s work in us and others. It is also imperative to avoid showy displays of religious affection that focus on ourselves rather than on God
- Invest quality time in the word of God.
All revivals are fueled by Scripture. At all times we seek an accurate understanding of the text, but are never satisfied with understanding alone. Revivals are times of obedience to the truth of God.
- Pray without ceasing.
(1 Thessalonians 5:17) It is not that we do nothing but pray, but that we do nothing without prayer. Daily times of prayer and Scripture–absolutely. Beyond that, a revived spirit seeks continuous communion with the Lord.
- Don’t settle.
If we want a personal revival, we must set our minds and hearts on God and not be turned aside by those who encourage an easier path, a milder devotion, a tepid spirituality. It is the lukewarm that Jesus spits from his mouth. ( Revelation 3:16)
Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:12-13
As we persevere in seeking the Lord, we will be revived. As we walk the path that God lays out for us, eternal things become dearer by far, and lesser things take their proper place under God and his Kingdom. God is our delight.
Will you not revive us again, that your people may rejoice in you? Psalm 85:6