Revival is Possible

What is the state of God's church today? Do apathy, shallowness, worldliness, failure to give, pastoral burnout, teenage dropout, fear of evangelism, flabby self-discipline, maxed-out schedules (with no real results), and a chronic shortage of strong and committed members sound familiar? Sadly, in many cases this scenario is all too real.

We know this is not the way it should be. We long to see God work in us and through us in powerful ways. We dream of a vibrant worshiping community of faith, evangelizing the world with love and power, triumphant with the Spirit. What we see instead are congregations in a plateau or decline, made of people who are enthusiastic about worldliness and apathetic about their faith.

But what was the state of the New Testament church? It was a community of believers empowered by the Holy Spirit and turning the world upside down with its message and life. This method spread like wildfire across cultures, overcoming the obstacles of paganism, persecution, and Pharisaism. It was powerful!

A. W. Tozer once wrote, “If the Holy Spirit was withdrawn from the church today, 95% of what we do would go on and no one would know the difference. If the Holy Spirit had been withdrawn from the New Testament church 95% of what they did would stop and everybody would know the difference.” Today, more than anything, we need the Holy Spirit!

"A revival of true godliness among us is the greatest and most urgent of all our needs. To seek this should be our first work. There must be earnest effort to obtain the blessing of the Lord, not because God is not willing to bestow His blessing upon us, but because we are unprepared to receive it. Our heavenly Father is more willing to give His Holy Spirit to them that ask Him, than are earthly parents to give good gifts to their children. But it is our work, by confession, humiliation, repentance, and earnest prayer, to fulfill the conditions upon which God has promised to grant us His blessing. A revival need be expected only in answer to prayer. While the people are so destitute of God's Holy Spirit, they cannot appreciate the preaching of the Word; but when the Spirit's power touches their hearts, then the discourses given will not be without effect. Guided by the teachings of God's Word, with the manifestation of His Spirit, in the exercise of sound discretion, those who attend our meetings will gain a precious experience, and returning home, will be prepared to exert a healthful influence" (True Revival, p. 9).

Friends, it is time to pray earnestly for revival!

Resources on Revival

The following resources will inspire you and give a solid scriptural foundation for your prayers.

A Church That Prayed (pdf) - This story of what happened when a whole church family began investing heavily in prayer is a must read for anyone seeking to encourage prayer in their church. Revival is possible!!

God Did An Awesome Thing: A Church Growth Strategy that Worked (pdf) - Another must-read story about how God birthed revival through the prayers of a discouraged pastor. The church growth that happened afterwards was remarkable.

Praying 4 H.O.P.E. Initiative - Revival comes at a cost--earnest, persevering prayer. This document from the 24/7 United Prayer initiative will show you exactly what you need to do in order for your church to become a House of Prayer. If you can only read one thing about reviving your church--this is the one to read. 

Praying for Revival (pdf) - Scripture and Ellen White quotes to guide your church's prayers for revival. (website) - This website is full of wonderful resources on prayer, Bible study, and revival.

True Revival (by Ellen White) - This volume collects Ellen White's most important writings on revival. She helps us distinguish between true and false revival, and talks about how revival reveals itself in our Christian walk.

Praying for Your Church - A powerful PowerPoint presentation on why prayer matters and how to pray effectively for your church. Covers the basic elements of prayer and God's calling to each of us to become intercessors for our church and community. 

Please also see Recommended Resources page for many additional books and resources on prayer and revival.