begin with them

His sincerity made me smile, and though I could not see him through my closed eyes, I imagined him flicking back a lock of hair to expose the  impassioned crease furrowing his brow.  I caressed the cold carpet with my fingertips, half of me praying along and half of me troubled as he prayed, “God, send us revival and let it start right here with this group.”  God couldn’t start revival in the city with that group, though, could He?  Not when we’d prayed so long He’d start moving through us….

Conviction still floods me when I realize the selfishness of my heart that night.  How much time had I wasted, waiting for the Holy Spirit to manifest in my own little pre-fabricated box–unwilling to support His working in the city outside of my own ministry bubble unless I was directly involved in leadership of that movement in some way.  Sadly, that’s how it is with many of us.  It’s a pendulum existence of either believing that God cannot possibly move in a denomination, church, ministry, etc. outside of the one in which we’re directly involved, and shunning any opportunity to be planted and established in a church or ministry family.  Where’s the balance between the two?

For me, it came down to the question I felt God ask me tonight:  “Are you desperate enough for revival that you are willing to relinquish the glory of being in the group where it breaks out initially?”

Churches in Terre Haute, Indiana and Peoria, Illinois have embraced an intensive 21-day consecration period of fasting and prayer seeking a move of God that they’re calling “The Divine Experiment.”  They’re turning away from texting, television, facebook, cell phones–all kinds of things that aren’t bad, but are distractions–and meeting corporately every night to fast, pray, and cultivate a place for the Presence of God to rest.  The testimonies that are coming from this are so encouraging, but the one that has stayed with me the most has been about the Baptist church in Peoria that is suddenly experiencing a move of the Holy Spirit without even being involved in The Divine Experiment.

What a beautiful example of God’s heart to move on regions, not just on solitary church buildings.  My prayer lately has been, “God, I want to cultivate such an atmosphere of prayer in my home that neighbors down the road or people driving by start getting filled with the baptism of the Holy Spirit without knowing why.  Let my life become a spiritual hot spot even without the label or fame of this.” 

My prayer is no longer just, “God, send revival and let it start with me.”  Don’t get me wrong, I would be honored for Him to use my life in that capacity; however, what is more important is that He breaks in with power, regardless of where it starts.  The unified bride of Jesus is not one fractured with a patent-finding heart.  He will not vindicate a competitive spirit with a lasting move of His Presence. 

Holy Spirit, move in power, and find in me someone who will support that move, wherever You choose to let it begin.

This entry was posted in Holy Spirit, humility, intercession, Jesus, prayer and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to begin with them

  1. cherish says:

    He will share His glory with no other.
    && rightly so. . .

    He’s using you my heart sister (:

    shalom aleichem

  2. slamdunk says:

    Thanks for discussing and linking the Divine Experiment program. It sounds like a good and much needed approach.

    • Chrystal says:

      the passion of this group has blessed me so much already in the short time i’ve known about it. is this what it takes for us to take hold of God’s heart? i think that it’s very likely…

  3. If we pray and seek God in a real way we will be personally revived… that is where revival starts, when we personally revive our hearts and strengthen our experience with Him, not that we’re doing anything to anyone else, but that we are on fire and are then capable of spreading it to others as we stay on fire in particular way and burn off any dross within us… God should consume us… He’s a consuming fire!

    • Chrystal says:

      Sounds like this is a personal experience for you =) It’s a beautiful thing when the Spirit of God touches the spirit of man. Our hearts should always be postured to allow God to work in us (and then through us)…but I know in my own life, there’s been that “feisty spirit of competition” that’s shunned getting involved with any other group or thinking that the Lord could possibly use any other ministry if I wasn’t involved in it. I think part of being consumed is becoming identity-less, and that’s a hard thing for me at this stage of my life. I still want credit for things “I” (but really, the Lord through me) do. I still feel a twinge of angst when the Lord answers a prayer I prayed and someone else gets the credit for it. I still daydream about ministering in such a way that, if I take a step back and really examine my motives, would draw fame and attention to myself. The struggle against flesh is so deceptive because so often it comes in the guise of appearing holy and used of the Lord. May God give us a reverent terror of desiring to be like Simon in the book of Acts and peddle His Spirit for profit–even if the only benefit we’re seeking is the approval of others!

      Looks like I got a little carried away there and wandered away from your original point. =) You’re completely right–and may the Lord baptize you afresh with Holy Spirit fire that sparks your community. The world needs more burning lighthouses…

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