Will You not revive us again, that Your people may rejoice in You? —Psalm:85:6
A backslidden condition is often like cancer; we don’t know we have it. We can grow spiritually cold so gradually that we don’t realize how carnal we have actually become. Sometimes it takes a tragedy, a crisis, or the voice of some prophet of God to awaken us to our desperate need. Only then can we claim God’s promise, “I will pour water on him who is thirsty, and floods on the dry ground” (Isaiah:44:3).
I am in need of revival when I have lost my enthusiastic zest for the Word of God, when my prayer life has lapsed into a dull routine (or lapsed altogether), when I have left my first love. I need a fresh touch from God when I am more interested in TV programs than in the meeting of the local fellowship, when I am punctual for work but late for meetings, when I am regular at my job but spasmodic at the assembly. I need reviving when I am willing to do for dollars what I am unwilling to do for the Savior, when I spend more money on self-indulgence than I do on the work of the Lord.
We need revival when we harbor grudges, resentments, bitter feelings. When we are guilty of gossiping and backbiting. When we are unwilling to confess wrongs we have committed or to forgive others when they confess their faults to us. We need reviving when we fight like cats at home, then appear in the assembly as if all were sweetness and light. We need to be revived when we have become conformed to the world in our talk, our walk, our whole lifestyle. How great is our need when we are guilty of the sins of Sodom—pride, fullness of bread, and prosperous ease (Ezekiel:16:49)!
As soon as we realize our coldness and barrenness, we can claim the promise of 2 Chronicles:7:14: “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
Confession is the road to revival!
O Holy Ghost, revival comes from Thee;
Send a revival—start the work in me.
Thy Word declared Thou wilt supply our need;
For blessings now, O Lord, I humbly plead.
—J. Edwin Orr
Taken from One Day at a Time, a 366-day devotional by William MacDonald.