I’ve been praying for Revival off and on for more than 20 years, as far as I can remember. But sometimes, I’ve experienced a work of God that is very exciting, and I really don’t realize that it has the elements of revival, until I’ve stepped back from the experience and reviewed the moments with a colleague or friend. I suppose I need to ask, what is revival? There is much written about the phenomenon, and there are many reports of revival breaking out in previous centuries on the east coast, reports of meetings where many are healed and delivered in Africa, places in the Middle East have reported enthusiastic experiences by Christians living on the edge, or in persecution or being miraculously saved from despair and humiliation. Not everything that is happening gets recorded. In John 20:30 it says that Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. So I can safely assume that revival is experiencing something done by Jesus (God, Holy Spirit), and we don’t always hear about it.
Saturday my pastor was asked to talk with a man, 61 years old, who was very sick and during that meeting the man prayed a prayer of salvation, asking God to forgive him of any transgressions and invited Jesus to come and reside with him, in his heart. Monday, the man left this life and was swept up into the arms of Jesus. Revival? Awesome timing!
The next evening, I stopped in and caught the tail end of our evening bible study and we spoke about this timely confession of faith before this man died, and a parishioner in our bible study, with tears in his eyes spoke about something that was recorded in a magazine about what a heavy metal musician said, expressing his viewpoints on dying. It wasn’t very hopeful or full of faith. This parishioner was overwhelmed with compassion for this musician whose music he really loved. He just couldn’t believe this musician spoke so callously about death, even his own death, which occurred in the unforeseen future. And I said, in Revelation 1:18 it says, “….I was dead, and see I am alive forever and ever; and I have the keys of Death and Hades.” That says to me that the keys give Christ access into Hell (Hades) and if Christ Himself overcame death on the cross, He can go to Hell and save us. Now, this may not line up with theology, but I can’t imagine God ignoring my bible study companion’s heart of compassion filled with love for this musician! Just the thought of this possibility is rather reviving to my heart!!
Today, I’m working on a new project to bring hope into our neighborhood, and I’m feeling rather excited, believing God to do a work of revival in our neck of the woods today!