I had always thought of revival as the Church growing…which it is. However, I viewed it as the Church growing because there were more stones being added to the temple of God (more people being saved). The Calvary Road by Roy Hession flipped my view around. Revival doesn’t have to do with people outside the Church. If you break down the word ‘revival’ it means to infuse life back into something that has lived before. People outside the Church have never been alive spiritually, and as such they cannot be given life again. Revival is inside the church. It is the growth of individuals inside the Church, those who are already a part of the temple of God; and this won’t just make the temple taller or more expansive, but will actually multiply the size. A square that doubles in size occupies four times as much space as it did before. A cube will occupy eight times as much space. As the temple grows it will become more fit for the dwelling of God.
Revival is also not a communal thing in and of itself. It is a personal thing in that the members of the body of Christ each saying in his heart that he will be more like Christ and surrender his will. He will break before God daily and be filled with the Holy Spirit. With this being the definition of revival, it is impossible for there to be a revival outside the Church! The Holy Spirit only indwells people who are surrendered to Christ.
What does revival mean to me? It used to mean that I would look for more people coming forward at an altar call. I thought that it would mean more people coming to the church on Sundays, larger Sunday schools and more Wednesday night Bible studies. That isn’t what I see it as now. Now I see revival being me, as an individual, going into my room and pouring out my life in surrender and brokenness before Christ.
School of Discipleship USA
Gospel for Asia
Whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. James 4:14
For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:21
in·vest·ment- time, energy, or matter spent in the hope of future benefit.
The Lord has been challenging me in examining my heart for its true investment. These verses arouse a soberness that causes me to ask myself, what am I ultimately striving to treasure and invest in?
As we have heard say, “Life is precious”. Yes, without a shadow of a doubt, I believe it surely to be true. But what is it about life makes it to be so uniquely precious? Christ.
As a part of my curriculum this year, I have the great privilege to read the book Character of God’s Workman. Even though I am just a ways into it, this book has made me examine my own life in regards to God’s love for all humanity. There is a part in the book where Nee writes, “Many who would work for God have a serious deficiency, which is, that they are totally lacking in the love of humanity. They lack the proper respect towards men, and they lack as well knowledge of the value of man in God’s sight. Indeed, each and every life on earth has been uniquely designed and created by an absolute wonderful Creator. And in each life is a soul; a soul that needs to hear and know that Love Himself has come to give more than this life ever could provide-eternal life through Jesus Christ alone!
To invest in the lives and souls of others seems like the toughest, yet greatest possible investment on earth. To think about this investment forces me out of my comfort zone, yet it seems like the only possible and worthwhile investment when reflecting on the amazing redemptive plan that Christ has for all the world. Oh to simply invest in a precious soul! This is an eternal investment! The benefits, being eternal ones, are of unimaginable value, as we anticipate to soon gather around the Lord’s Throne to worship Him forever and ever!
So, with life having that much of value, I pray the Lord would make me mindful of His love for all humanity. As we as God’s children, have been huge beneficiaries of His amazing grace, may the Lord use us in the lives of others for whom He has also died and cherishes greatly. As each life is compared to a mere vapor that disappears as quickly as it appears, I pray the Lord might continue to reveal the true purpose and meaning of life on earth. May our hearts be consumed with Christ Himself as our Treasure, and thus have an outflow of a love for mankind.
As Christians and students of the faith we are about the business of gaining insight into God’s character. It always amazes me how much more we can learn about His character as we move further along in our journeys.
Ever since God made me aware of my call to missions, I have been one track minded seeking out opportunities to go overseas and joining different missions organizations. I remember abiding in His strength only and being sold out to Him. I look back on that season with longing often as at that time I was completely sold out to Him.
For past few years I have been task oriented when it comes to my walk with the Lord and obeying His commands. If He tells me to do this or that, I will go do those things but in my own strength. What I didn’t realize is that I stopped abiding in his strength. After a while I became spiritually lazy and would be in self-indulgent. Of course, I would do whatever God told me to, which at the time I thought consisted of the notion of going to another country and dying for him. I began to rely on my walk in the past and therefore became lazy. Since I read the Bible and had learned so many lessons from it, I had the notion I didn’t need to read the Bible anymore. Even though I had no desire to read my Bible I would have gone and died for him.
Recently, my School of Discipleship class went through a book called Calvary Road. When I was reading through it I caught myself thinking that I knew these things, but then God convicted me the next several days saying, “There are so many things you think you know! You lost faith in the blood of the lamb, you lost hope in eternity.” I didn’t realize that I slowly but surely let the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches cloud my judgment. I had become a hearer of the word deceiving myself.
I was reading in the Word and read through Romans 3:25 “whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith.” The Spirit led me to carefully analyze and consider these things. What is faith? Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, and the conviction in the things not seen. What is conviction? Conviction is belief. Somewhere along the way I stopped believing. I was running on fumes. But the Lord is faithful and assured me that He is with me always. I am thankful that my logic and judgment does not dictate the truth, such as whether or not there is a God and His Son is Jesus. He has helped me realize that I need to become a Christian who lives by faith and not by experience, feelings or emotions. He has shown me that reading his word refines my faith in Him. I love His faithfulness.
“If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” (John 8:31-32)
John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only son, that who so ever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.”
We have all heard this verse many times and memorized it. But do we really believe and understand its truth? So often I think I must do something to earn God’s gifts and promises, and yet the Bible says only believe.
Here at Gospel for Asia School of Discipleship I’ve been learning that God uses others to speak into our lives if we will let them. This weekend something cool happened. Three times I heard a similar message, each time by a different person. I couldn’t help but think perhaps God is really trying to teach me something here! They were all talking about believing God and accepting the gift He is offering us. It is so crazy to think all I have to do is accept and I will be saved. But even accepting the gift of Jesus destroys ones pride. I want to do something for God, to show my worth, but He says “you can’t earn this, you can only believe”. I wonder how much I’ve missed out on in the promises of God simply because I didn’t believe. So it is that belief runs our lives; the choices we make, the way we spend our time and the desires we have are all based on our beliefs. It is very important what we believe, and I pray God will give me the grace to believe the promises He has written in scripture. Oh, what a freeing thing it is to believe our Saviour died for us while we were yet in our sin and He wants so much to have a relationship with us. Praise the LORD. God is definitely working at Gospel for Asia, and the best part is watching the staff follow Christ and walk in their example. They know who they are in Christ by believing His word and that is why they can follow Him. It is easy to follow someone that you believe the words they say.
The School of Discipleship January 2013 year is coming to a close and we are now officially studying our last book together as a class. But, not only are we studying it, but we are going to be teaching it, Lord willing! Yes, you read that right! We as School of Discipleship students have the amazing opportunity to facilitate class! I know that it will be a huge challenge, but in that, it will help me to depend on my Saviour more, and help me grow deeper in my relationship with Him! Yet another benefit to this is, as Susan said, we will get way more out of the lessons we teach, than what we ever have before! This year has been absolutely amazing! I have learned a lot and I praise my Heavenly Father for all that He has done in my life as a result.