Dr. Stanley Spence, Pastor First Baptist Church, Lincolnton, N.C.
Revival is a word disappearing from the vocabulary of the church with every year that passes. Revivals are work, we think to ourselves. The truth is we don’t ask for revival anymore. Sure, we want salvation for this friend or that loved one, but revival is a term of the past. Crusade is a word slipping into the history books as well. Rarely do you hear the term mentioned anymore. These terms reflect a difference in the church going forward.
This is an interesting issue the church must face and deal with--that is God is not through reaching people through these mediums. God still reaches folks through revival and crusade speakers. People respond to the Lord from challenges levied by the messages.
The breakdown seems to be that everyone is doing what they believe is right in their own eyes. The builders’ generation is fading fast. It isn’t what we can do together anymore, it is who is gifted for that and let them do their thing. The mystery of church is being replaced by the overabundance of services available on television, YouTube, etc. The curiosity of a friend following a friend to a church service is usually out of a human need they are enduring at the time. Occasionally a friend can gather in a soul or two. How can we reach others for Christ as we ought when we have abdicated our part of that responsibility to the experts (whoever does it better than you)?
God is still touching individual lives and using common folks just like you and me to do so. The question worth entertaining is, are we following our idea of outreach or are we following God’s work and what He is doing? Our future is God’s future and if we see things closing down we may be seeing through the eyes of our understanding and not through the eyes of God. He is orchestrating a future for His church and He isn’t through gathering His children.
So whether we have a crusade or a revival or witness one on one, His Kingdom is gathering strength--not fading. Let us lean into the plans which God is unfolding for His mission to be accomplished. God is with us and for us as we do His work here in this life.
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