We are not fighting a hopeless battle. We are not fighting on the losing side. While many of us deplore the state of the Church in America, the fact of the matter is that the Church as a whole will not go away. Also, there is always the hope for revival:
And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. – Matthew 16:18, ESV
This is a promise, and a mighty one at that. Nothing will destroy the church entirely. Just as God always preserved a remnant of His people, so too will he preserve the Church. The promise isn’t just to preserve, but to build. However, the Church will not be built on our abilities. The Church will not be built on our programs, our buildings, or our anything. The Church will be built on Jesus Christ. The Church will be built on the Scriptures that testify about Him and declare His glory. Why do I make a point out of all of this?
Simply to say that if we want revival we must first seek repentance. We must surrender and become obedient. We must allow Him, not anything we do, to be preeminent in our lives. The hope for revival is not found in us; The hope for revival is found in Him. Therefore, He must shine through us. He must dominate every worship and prayer service. He must be the Master and we the bondslaves. We aren’t doing this and that’s why revival is not forthcoming. We aren’t humbled and yielded. We still believe too much in our programs, in our own paltry human efforts. And that’s why we don’t see revival.
Evan Roberts, the leading figure of the Welsh revival of 1904-1905 is a good case study for us. The Welsh revival spread beyond Wales and even touched our shore here in America. Who was Evan Roberts? He was a coal miner barely trained for ministry (a three month crash course, if you will). What he was, though, was obedient and surrendered. That is why he was used mightily.
I’m not knocking credentials and training. I’m not saying we don’t need resources, buildings, and programs. Those are important. However, none of them are effective unless Jesus is most important and most prominent. He is the hope for revival, not us. And we will not see revival until we, as His people, give Him His due.