For those of you who actually check this site, and don’t just wait for email or Twitter notifications, I apologize for the weeks of silence. Had they been proceeded by something so profound that it needed time to sink in, I would have felt justified, but they were not, so I stand before you naked and ashamed for my procrastination (not literally, you may note with thanksgiving).
For the last week, however, I have the excuse of having attended for five days the Revival Week of Life Action Ministries in Michigan. There is so much that I could say along those lines, because I have so many mixed feelings about what proceeded. I could be analytical, but that might take weeks. Suffice it to say that I found the time set aside to seek God’s face to be refreshing to my soul, and though it was beset with distractions, I can safely say that through the sermons I saw that it was my pride and criticism that was drawing my eyes aside more than anything else.
During the time Mr Roberts was given the opportunity to speak almost everyday (Thursday excepted). The words were piercing to the souls of many there, not because of his cleverness or oratory skills but because they were words taken from the hearts of Scripture. He spoke one morning on the heart of the Revivalist, and he presented us with ten things that indicated such a heart. I present them here for your benefit, with some elaboration, and hope that if the Lord shows it fitting that you will take the time to write each of these down and consider them. We need God to work; I need God to work in me. But we must come, as the Church has been driven to come throughout the centuries, with desperation that knows that a work of an Omnipotent God is our only hope for revival and renewal.
1) A heart for revival is a heart that pants after the nearness of God. Not just seeking His hand in working, but seeking His face in constant knowing. Mr Roberts pointed out that the Manifest Presence of God keeps the life because it keeps the heart and the conscience tender.
2) a heart that thirsts for Truth. “Experience and excitement aren’t truth,” Mr Roberts said, and then elevating the Book which he held, “This is truth.” Are we thirsty for the truth of God’s word? In a private lunch with my Pastor, he exhorted me above all else against compromise, telling me that at whatever, whatever cost, stay true to Christ as He has revealed in His word, even if that means going against the grain of what others, friends, even my pastor if so needed, are telling me.
3) the Revival heart is a heart that recognizes and longs for the beauty that is found in Holiness. Has looking as the holiness of God, and the holiness produced by His past workings, caused us to desire this in our own life? Yea, desire and seeking?
4) A heart that is geared toward a completely repentant lifestyle. Are we resistant, or immediately responsive to the Holy Spirit’s promptings toward repentance?
5) A heart that understands the wiles of the Devil. Genesis 4:7, “Sin croucheth at thy door…do thou rule over it.” Are we sensitive enough to our own sin that we understand it and thus are able the more to resist it?
6) A heart that thrives on brokenness and contrition, and loves the discipline of the Lord.
7) A heart that weeps over the wayward and the lost. This is me, but is our understadning of Grace so cultivated that we say, “Who has made me to differ? And what do I have that i did not receive?” and thus have compassion on a world that doesn’t know Christ? truly seeing grace doesn’t sedate love for the lost, it intensifies it.
8) A heart of prayer. Of all disciplines, says this man who has followed Christ for sixty+ years, none are harder to maintain than real prayer.
9) A heart of hope. Revival must come, in order that Christ Kingdom may advance, and prophecy be fulfilled. There is no hope in our seeking or striving, or our merits; there is hope in God’s goodness and determination to make a name for Himself.
10) Finally, a Revival heart is a single heart. How often the scripture talks of singleness of heart, I cannot recount. A heart for revival is undivided toward God. And who is to say that we have excelled in this area, any more than these others?
There is much that remains to be said, but with that I leave you.