Leonard Ravenhill, whom I had the privilege of hearing in person and meeting with for questions and answers on several occasions stated it plainly, "The one main reason why there is no heaven sent revival in America today ... is because WE ARE CONTENT TO LIVE WITHOUT IT!"
I wonder how much that is true ... I wonder how often that is true in MY own life. Though I have carried a burden for revival for 35 years now, and seen it on numerous occasions ... how often am I content to live without it! I am convinced that THE GREATEST NEED in America is REVIVAL. Some are even uncomfortable with the word - they would rather talk about restoration, or renewal, or refreshing ... all good words, and all a PART of genuine revival ... but they are by-products and not the ultimate need. Psa. 51 would make it clear that they are all needed, but it seems we don't want to admit WE NEED REVIVAL. The other ideas "seem" a bit more positive, and we are more comfortable to say we need refreshment & renewal ... but we need to admit we are in many ways dead! We need to LIVE AGAIN. That is what revival means - God breathing LIFE back into the souls of His children.
I am firmly convinced that 2000 years of church history reveals that THE GREATEST TIMES OF LOST, UNREGENERATED PEOPLE COMING INTO THE KINGDOM OF GOD, CAME, NOT AS A RESULT OF AN EVANGELISTIC EFFORT, BUT AS A RESULT OF REVIVAL. I spent 30 years of my life with Life Action Revival Ministries - where at that time (and as far as I know still) we stated our purpose for existence as a ministry was this - "To glorify God, through a revival among God's people, resulting in a spiritual awakening among the lost." I think there are several key things stated in that missions statement.
1) To glorify God - this is the ULTIMATE purpose for your life and mine while on this earth. It is not "soul winning" as vital as that is; it is not to build a large church building so people can come once a week for a couple of hours - then go out the rest of the week and "live for themselves"; or to be sure we have the best entertainment available in our community. Our purpose is, "whether therefore you eat or drink, or whatsoever you do, DO ALL TO THE GLORY OF GOD." I Cor.10:31
2) Through a revival among God's people - the very word revival means - to live again. I submit to you, that in order for something (someone) to live again, they must first of all to have possessed life. REVIVAL is for God's people. Are you hungry for new life to be breathed into you? Into your value system, into your choices, into your words, your use of time, your use of the finances entrusted to you, your morals, your viewing habits, your priorities. Can you think of any of those areas in which you need God to "breathe new life into it?"
3) Resulting in a spiritual awakening among the lost - certainly in our country we need moral reformation, we need character restoration, we need political replacement, we need historical return to the Judeo - Christian foundation that this nation was, without a doubt, founded upon ... but undergirding all of that ... we need millions of people in America to come to God through repentance and faith in Jesus Christ. Once they are truly regenerated - they will begin to understand the need morally, politically, spiritually, socially in our land. Think of this - the last great revival that SO impacted the world took place in Wales in a 14 month period in 1904 - 05. Think of this - what if God were to move in America in just the same approximate level that He moved in Wales during that time ... we would witness over 30 million people getting saved in 14 months in our nation. Remember - He is able to do exceeding ABUNDANTLY ABOVE ALL (the name of this ministry) we can ask or think! How does He do that - through the power that works in us (believers) - what power - resurrection power. The same resurrection power that He demonstrated in raising Jesus Christ from the dead (Eph. 1:19) He longs to demonstrate through us (Eph. 3:20) in revival.
So what are those ingredients in chronological order (which is important, since God outlines it as He did) II Chronicles 7:14 - we must:
1) Humble ourselves
3) Seek God's face
4) Turn from OUR wicked ways.
I will expand on those at a later time (though, if we are honest, we probably don't need someone to expand because the Holy Spirit in every believer is able to clearly expose to us, if we are listening, the specific needs in our own life).
DEAR FRIENDS ... we must humble ourselves. Shhh ... go ... get quiet ... listen to the Lord ... and let us agree with God, pray, seek His face and repent. Seek the Lord ... till He comes and rains righteousness upon us!