I don’t know about you, but Revival is not a word I hear often. Yet, it intrigues me, and I desire revival, in my own heart and in our world. Today, pastor Jason Holdridge shares his thoughts on what revival truly means.
The word revival can conjure up some weird feelings and even weirder pictures in my mind.
I remember going to week-long revivals in my little Baptist church growing up where an evangelist would come and try and get us fired up about reaching the lost or repenting of our secret sins. He would wear a suit and tie, yell a lot, share zany stories to stir us out of our spiritual slumber, and have an altar call. I don’t remember anyone going to the altar. No one.
This was what revival meant to me growing up. Meetings without meaning. Like the Indians used to say, “Lots of dust, lots of wind, no rain.” No rain.
When you need rain else you shrivel up and die, wind kicking up dust doesn’t cut it. In the church there can be lots of motion and emotion, but that’s not revival. Revival isn’t a pep rally with a pep band and a pep talk (which is often what church can be each weekend). That’s all very peppy, but revival isn’t merely peppy.
Revival isn’t even really very pretty. Revival is about repentance and repentance is about changing, and changing is often grueling. We have comfort zones that revival seeks to mess with and interrogate.
Revival asks us to abandon things that steal, kill and destroy our hearts…not just sinfulness, but selfishness.
Revival seeks to burn away everything little “g” god that steals our worship from the big “G” God.
It isn’t just rearranging the same furniture or laying new carpet over the cat pee-saturated floor boards. No, it often tears into the walls of our will and floors of our faith seeking to replace rotting and rotten attitudes and actions with solid trusses of truth. Truth that truly sets us free.
But before the truth sets us free, I’ve learned that it first ticks us off. We are so used to believing lies that truth feels threatening and mean.
But revival is nothing more than truth being given a chance to have its way with us. Revival happens in the human heart when a person learns to trust the truth instead of following their feelings. Revival can be emotional and sensational, but often it isn’t us kneeling at a church altar crying during a song that’s tugging on our heartstrings. Revival is often raw encounters with truth where the Spirit of God is whispering to our spirits saying, “Are you ready to trust me for real this time? Are you willing to let go of that and to take hold of me? Do you believe I’m trying to help you and not hurt you? Trust me. Trust me.”
That’s personal revival.
But there are these beautiful times when a collection of people experience this individual encounter with God and simultaneously surrender to God’s way and will, that’s when we brush up against something akin to heaven. That’s when a group of friends, a whole family, or even a whole church can concurrently witness God touching down in their midst like a tornado.
Jason Holdridge is the main speaking pastor at Impact Church. Jason and his wife Heidi have five beautiful children. He has been shaped by nearly twenty years of ministry. Believing what Jesus said, that He came to seek and save the lost, Jason leads toward and through the redemptive story of God’s Word, vigilantly pursuing ministry ideas and people who restore, renew, and reproduce life! He is committed to leading Impact Church to reach the people in the surrounding communities with a fresh message of grace and truth – the hope of the Gospel.
Tweetables:Revival asks us to abandon things that steal, kill and destroy our hearts. #PrayAtoZ
Revival seeks to burn away everything little god that steals our worship from the big God. #PrayAtoZ
Revival is nothing more than truth being given a chance to have its way with us.#PrayAtoZ
Revival is often raw encounters with truth where God whispers Are you ready to trust me for real this time?