(November 12, 2021) Erica Grace, ex-missionary to South America, challenges us to pray for our nation…
Have you been praying for revival in our nation? It looks like the Lord is answering our prayers. Sometimes it is necessary to define words that we commonly use and presume we all know what it means. By definition ‘to revive’ means to make someone strong, healthy, or active again. To restore from inactive to active, from unconscious to conscious. In other words, to wake up!
The worldwide ‘pandemic’ has shaken us from our complacent sleep and revived many across the world. This unbelievable event has disrupted our homes, our jobs, our travel, our education, every aspect of our lives. What made it even more surreal is that it took place all over the world at the same time, spreading fear and panic.
Why did we need a wake-up call?
It is very easy to become complacent in a nation like Australia. Life here is easy in comparison to other places. The lackadaisical Aussie lifestyle places few demands on its citizens. But what does it mean to become complacent? It is defined as ‘self-satisfaction especially when accompanied by unawareness of actual dangers or deficiencies.’
It reminds me of the parable of the Ten Bridesmaids, ‘When the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and fell asleep (Matthew 25:5).
If we were honest with ourselves, we would have to admit that this wakeup call has shed a light on our personal devotional life. Perhaps we thought it was ‘good enough’, after all God loves me and he won’t mind my sporadic personal devotionals because he understands my busyness.
We needed to be reminded of what it means to be devoted; it means to be ardently dedicated and loyal. The Latin root word devotus is the same one as taking a vow of love and loyalty.
For us the believers, God has a different standard, a much higher one than just a once-a-week visit. He wants us to grow and to ‘be mature in the Lord measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ’ (Ephesians 4:13) to not be content being just casual believers, and part-time saints!
A time to take stock
This time of disruption has forced us to take stock of our marriage and family relationships, as well. Having to live in close quarters for such extended periods of time has brought to the surface issues we had refused to deal with before. Sweeping things under the carpet, allowing our marriage to go on ‘cruise control,’ becoming robotic, has shown us that we were heading for potential danger.
God is reminding us he is seriously interested in our lives and wants to be the head of our home. So much so that he uses the model of marriage, which is his invention, to reflect his eternal love to the world.
The church, the body of Christ all over the world, is also having a monumental wake-up call. It has sent us a shocking insult to be labelled ‘non-essential’ – how can that be? Perhaps churches were veering out of direction in society and culture, becoming complacent with our rituals and programs and thus becoming increasingly irrelevant.
Ephesians 3:10 tells us that ‘God’s purpose in all this was to use the church to display his wisdom in its rich variety to all unseen rulers and authorities in the heavenly places.’
What does that mean?
Mobilising with renewed endeavour
It means that we were meant to be on the frontline exposing the works of darkness and confronting the spiritual battles going on in our nations. The church – that’s us, every born-again Christian – holds the solution to our nation’s ailments, don’t we? We are the guardians of the gospel, proclaiming the good news of salvation in Jesus’ name to a lost and perishing world.
It is heartening to see churches mobilising with renewed endeavour all over the globe, having countless prayer meetings, seeking earnestly a new refreshing infilling of the Holy Spirit. There is a new and concerted endeavour to go back to basics and preach the pure, undiluted word of God, concentrating on the lost souls and building up the body of Christ.
The world outside the church has also had its wake-up call. The great suffering and fear of death that was spread throughout by the unrelenting airwaves has disclosed how spiritually lost people have been. All the nonsense they have been force-fed in our society of ‘each one having his own truth’ has brought them nothing but misery and confusion, it has not been enough to feed their hungry souls. They are looking for the truth and now are ready for a spiritual conversation.
- Is this the great harvest time of souls we have been waiting for as predicted in Matthew 13:39 when it says: ‘The harvest is the end of the world’?
- Is the church ready for the task?
Staying alert and being active Christians
So, do we want to go back to normal? Never! Normal is what made us drowsy in the first place. No, this will be a new day and God is giving us one more opportunity to refresh every aspect of our lives for the end times.
Let us rise to the challenge and…
- Rekindle our devotion to our Lord Jesus Christ,
- Restore the bonds of love and unity in our homes and our fellowship
- Pray fervently together as brothers and sisters
- Move lucidly in our mission to seek the lost
- Heed seriously the warning to ‘… be on guard, not asleep like the others. Stay alert and clearheaded’ (1 Thessalonians 5:6).
Thank you, Lord for wakening us and reviving us!
Erica Grace is author of Foundations for the Family, a biblical teaching series suitable for whole congregations. She and her husband, Chris, are warmly welcomed itinerant ministers. Erica is happy to receive questions regarding the above article and her research into this subject. Links: OnlinerConnect@gmail.com