“I hear you talk on the radio about revival with a sense of optimism that I’m not sure I resonate with. I get the sense that things will grow more difficult with time. Not easier.”
We sat across the dinner table with our new friends, and I really wanted to hear what my friend’s husband had to say. I pressed my palms into my chair and leaned forward, and replied, “Oh, wow. I didn’t at all mean to convey a sense of naïve optimism. I’m so aware of the times we’re in. And I wasn’t at all implying that we were going ‘back’ to anything. There has been a shift in the atmosphere and culture that has changed history. I agree with you. I think we’re definitely in for some challenging times ahead.”
The thing about hosting a live talk show is that you’ve got your eye on several things at once (the text line, the producer chatbox, your guest notes, and the clock). Have you ever thought through a whole paragraph but shared only a sentence’s worth? That may be what happened here.
We went on to talk about the times and our call as believers to navigate the days in which we find ourselves. But my friend’s comment wouldn’t leave me alone. I decided I needed to do a whole show on this topic to clarify my perspective and answer any questions others may have. We titled the show “Let’s Talk” and had a great time together.
So, here’s what I believe about the revival I believe has started and is coming in greater measures. Now granted, this is just my opinion. I spend a lot of time in prayer, and I do consider myself an intercessor as I can spend extended periods in prayer and be absolutely energized by it. I pray you’ll receive my thoughts in the manner I share them; humbly, carefully, and prayerfully. I’m not implying that I speak for God or that I’m an authority on this subject. I’m just sharing my sense about the times we’re in. So here goes…
I believe many Christians have awakened from apathy and are finding their passion, and purpose. Many believers sense that the compromises and excuses that once seemed okay are no longer acceptable. I think that these trying times have put the squeeze on some of our misguided beliefs about God. We now have a chance to follow Him on His terms, not ours.
When I talk about revival, I don’t mean the old-fashioned tent meetings where hundreds get saved and healed all in the same night. Although I’ve heard stories of this very thing happening in our day! But when I pray for our world and for our nation, specifically, I envision a massive wave on its way to us, a wave of God’s cleansing, healing, delivering power. God is coming for a spotless Bride (as scripture says), and He’s already started His purifying work within our hearts. I sense that the cleansing, convicting, and healing power of Jesus is about to break through in a way that forever changes the global church; changes how we walk with God and with each other.
I also strongly sense that God is about to draw some of the most unlikely and seemingly “unsaveable” people to Himself and will use them in much the way He used the apostle Paul after his conversion. With all my heart, I believe that many prodigals will come home; families and marriages will be restored, and we’ll see answers to prayer that our souls have longed to see for so very long.
I’ve prayed in this regard every day for as long as I can remember. And I know I’m not alone in this form of passionate, persistent prayer. Even so, I believe we are coming into a time as believers we never in our lifetimes would have imagined even five years ago.
I sense, too, that in the days to come, we’ll see an ever-increasing opposition to the gospel of Jesus Christ and to Christians. I believe that following Christ will cost us in ways it hasn’t in the past.
Even though we’ll see God move in power, and peoples’ lives will be forever changed, the hearts of others will grow harder still. They’ll dig their heels in, lock their jaws, and set their faces against the Lord.
Some still walk in darkness because they have not yet encountered God, but they’d love Him if they knew Him (that’s why your presence in their lives matters so very much). But others simply love the darkness more than light. They want nothing to do with Jesus or a with a life of transformation. Scripture predicted it so, and we’re seeing it play out before our very eyes.
So, what are we to do? We prepare for God’s incredible outpouring. We guard our hearts. Worship God continually. Read His Word. Love others well. Be quick to forgive. Live expectantly. Cling to hope. Pray powerfully and specifically. And keep our eyes on Jesus.
He promised to come for us, and He asked us to live ready.
“‘In the last days,’ God says,
‘I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy,
your young men will see visions,
your old men will dream dreams.
Even on my servants, both men, and women,
I will pour out my Spirit in those days,
and they will prophesy.
I will show wonders in the heavens above
and signs on the earth below,
blood and fire and billows of smoke.
The sun will be turned to darkness
and the moon to blood
before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord.
And everyone who calls
on the name of the Lord will be saved.’”