Posted on Thu, Jul 6, 2017
Pastor Bob Norton
Little springs of revival seem to be bubbling up by the Holy Spirit into little streams or tributaries that have the potential of being a mighty river of revival. As I pen these words, my family and I are on the threshold of a great river adventure. We’ll be rafting the Colorado River from Phantom Ranch to Lake Meade. We’re excited about this trip and I’m also excited about the rivers of revival coming to Christ’s Church at Church of the Resurrection. The Colorado combines the placid waters of contemplation with the rapids cascading over boulders of opportunity. The energy one derives from the river is unforgettable and life-changing. Hold on to your seat. We have an adventure up ahead at Church of the Resurrection as we navigate the River of Revival.
Rivers and streams have a predictable appeal to the human imagination. They attract us. As a source of water they represent life-giving qualities. Their tranquil flow makes them an image of mystery and fascination. When in Psalm 46 the poet wants a tranquil contrast to the opening imagery of cataclysmic upheaval in nature, all he has to do is assert, “There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God” (Ps 46:4). The Christian Church has evocative hymns about God’s people gathering at the river and about God’s perfect love being like a glorious river. The more than 150 biblical references to rivers and streams provide beautiful imagery of life-giving divine-human encounters as God provides the “living water” for which God’s children yearn.
Ezekiel 47 gives an inspiring vision of a river of revival and spiritual restoration issuing forth from under the Temple out into the hearts of the people. First ankle deep. Then knee deep. Then waist deep. And then a deep, deep river brings the restorative power of God’s Spirit to the people. What an image. What a mighty act of God. Our God wants to bring spiritual awakening and life-giving renewal to His people.
Historic revivals have usually begun in the heart and life of an unusual Christian leader or within a small group of committed Christians who gather to humble them-selves, pray, repent of sin and who seek the Lord Jesus Christ and His righteousness.
Many of us have been praying for that kind of revival for some time. Our nation desperately needs such a manifestation of God’s grace.
One of the great debates concerning revival is the place of God’s sovereignty and our responsibility. There are those who believe that revivals are totally an act of God’s sovereignty without any human responsibility. Others believe that God’s Word clearly communicates principles of revival, and that He is simply waiting for His people to fulfill them in order for revival to take place. Many of us would admit that there is a wonderful mystery about revival in which both God’s sovereignty and our obedience are very much involved. We are living in such a day.
By God’s grace and the power of the Holy Spirit, our Lord has been moving in the hearts of hundreds and thousands of Christians in America to pray for revival. Let’s join this Great Prayer Awakening. We are seeing encouraging signs of the stirring of the Holy Spirit in Flagstaff today. We’ll be distributing Prayers that Birth Revival based on 2 Chronicles 7:14 “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
Praying for America is the truest form of patriotism. Let us humble ourselves and seek His best for our beloved country.
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