Revival; ‘An improvement in condition, strength or popularity’
-Oxford English Dictionary
I wonder what revival (in a ‘kingdom coming’ sort of way) would look like in the everyday minutiae of life? What changes would it bring? What impact would be felt? And how would we know it was happening?
We think we know how it starts within the church community, but how does it continue? I believe the answers to these questions will help us to not only ignite revival in ourselves, but to sustain it in the wider community.
When I hear the word ‘revival’ it does not move me. I have heard the word so many times during the course of my Christian journey that it simply reverberates in my mind for the briefest of moments, before being side-lined due to familiarity. I don’t feel it would be going too far to suggest the word has lost some of its core meaning for most. This is a shame, as revival is a concept containing the promises and purposes of God for our generation and for generations to come. Revival is our portion, a vital part of our inheritance.
Revival is not of the past, it is present and it is future.
But revival can seem so distant and disaffecting. It can serve as a spiritual carrot on a string, luring us along the path of salvation, leading us to hope while at the same time daring not to hope that we will ever see it manifest fully in our lifetimes.
Maybe the word revival is misleading; maybe it doesn’t do justice to the greater picture God is finely painting.
Could words like ‘reawakening’, ‘rebirth’, ‘recovery’, ‘renewal’, ‘renaissance’, ‘restoration’ and ‘resurgence’ more accurately portray the concept of what revival is all about?
Revival is more than a series of meetings where the manifest presence of God is evident. It is more than healings, salvations and angelic visitations. More than prophetic revelation, deliverance and divine commissioning.
Revival is all those things and more.
It is healings and miracles breaking out in hospitals, the discovery of creative cures for illnesses and infectious diseases, deliverance and freedom for patients in psychiatric units, prisons bathed in the presence of almighty God, prisoners repenting on their knees. It is corporate corruption ceasing, the United Nations actually uniting nations, politicians convicted to deal honestly, justly and righteously in their positions. It is racism, sexism and ageism fading into oblivion, workers striving for excellence, worship and prayer meetings in parliament and business, marriages restored, children raised in the will of God, bullying and terrorism overcome by reconciliation and love, suicide and homicide rapidly declining, understanding across cultures and the name of Jesus lifted high in schools.
In short; revival is the knowledge of the glory of the Lord covering the earth, as the waters cover the sea.
This moves me. This is something I can run towards and give my life for.
Reawakening, Rebirth, Recovery, Renewal, Renaissance, Restoration, Resurgence…Revival.