The Revival has come. I don’t know about you, but I am in dire need of this revival especially as we have entered into the last quarter of the year. The fasting and prayer in January to usher in God’s blessings and to seek His direction for 2019 seem so so so far away, but I recall the expectations and the joyous anticipation of what 2019 would bring. I remember God’s word over me as we concluded the prayers. I remember them and I have often clung to them when anxiety and doubt rear their twin heads. As Jesus’ parable of the seed and the four types of soil in Matthew 13 comes to mind, I have often wondered over these past 10 months whether I am that soil upon which seeds fell among thorns, that grew and choked the plants.
Meaning of Revival
The speaker for the first day of this 3-day revival program at the Catholic Church of Divine Mercy, Lekki started by defining what a revival was. She called it an extraordinary movement of the Holy Spirit and a time of repentance and encounter with God. She stated that a revival is a spiritual re-awakening from a state of dormancy or stagnation in the life of a believer. In this encounter, the Holy Spirit breaks the chains of limitations, sicknesses and all that is not part of God’s plan in your life. She stressed that what is required for a revival is the spirit of humility and the desire of the spirit to spiritually grow.
Types of People Needing A Revival
- LOSS OF FIRST LOVE
In Revelations (Rev) 2:1-5, we see the complaint leveled against the Church of Ephesus as a people who forgot God who was their first love. The speaker mentioned that any time you fall away from your first love, a revival is needed.
2. EXPERIENCING PERSECUTION
Rev 2:10-11 talks of suffering befalling the people of Smyrna. She stated that you need a revival if you are spiritually and mentally exhausted. There’s this song by Tamela Mann which captures this state called “Take me to the King”
3. BELIEF IN THINGS CONTRARY TO WORD OF GOD & CONTRARY TO CHURCH TEACHINGS
She talked of those who need a revival to change their mindset which in turn, will change the way they behave. Reference was made also to those who perpetuate false preaching which are contrary to the teaching of the Church. Now, when she mentioned this category, I was keen to know how you would persuade someone constantly criticizing a Catholic belief such as devotions to Mary and the saints, that he or she needed a revival because of this mindset. Your stance of the need for that person to have a revival might even sound spiritually arrogant. However, she stressed that such people needed a revival to find the truth.
4. SPIRITUALLY DEAD PEOPLE
The speaker drew our attention to Rev 3:1-6 of those who have the reputation of being alive, but are spiritually dead. She mentioned the hypocrisy involved and the need for such people to be made alive through revival. In her analogy of the fig tree which Jesus cursed in Mark 11:12-18, she pointed out that Jesus had expectations just as He has expectations of us, but He had to curse the fig tree because it did not turn out how it should be. She stressed that revival will cause you to be fruitful in all areas of your life, be it your business, marriage, relationship and more. Thus, a revival is needed to avoid the fate of the fig tree.
5. NOMINAL CATHOLICS
The speaker described nominal Catholics to be those who do not know who they are in Christ Jesus. As a result of this ignorance of their identity, they are powerless. She explained that a revival will show them who they are which is essentially, a priest, a prophet and a king.
This also applies to those Catholics who do not appreciate the power of the Sacraments within the Church such as the Eucharist and the sacrament of Reconciliation. A revival will draw them into the knowledge of these gems of the Church.
6. LUKEWARM PEOPLE
She referred to Rev 3:16 which necessitated God vomiting those who are luewarm. Psalm 85:6 sees King David yearning to be revived as he cries out “Will you not revive us again so that your people can rejoice in you?” To be spewed out of God’s mouth is arguably the worst end in which someone can find himself in, thus the need for a revival to avoid this doom which is brought about by not using your spiritual gifts to give God glory.
By the time, she had finished her description of this sixth category of persons who need a revival, I could identify myself in at least two categories and I thanked God for ordering my steps to start this program. She stressed that the church needed a revival. Since we made up the church, it is fitting to say that we all need to be revived. The speaker urged us to rise from our apathy and refuse to be comfortable when the winds of revival are not sweeping through the lives of all these categories of people.
The journey continues as we step into Day 2 of the Revival Program tomorrow. I await in anticipation.