Evangelical pastors focused on restoring a Judeo-Christian culture in a post-Christian world must be actively engaged in the process without becoming continuously enraged at the participants. Verbally carpet-bombing a community of people who disagree with your political position exposes your spiritual condition without advancing your cause. Why?
“The anger of man does not accomplish the righteousness of God.” James 1:20
Os Guinness challenges me to “think Christianly.” I believe he has accurately described the current condition of the American Church. He persuades me to focus my eyes on the revival of the church, not the survival of the church.
“Much of the American Church is in the same poor condition as the church before the Reformation or before the Great Awakening in the early 18th Century. So we need reformation and we need revival. Our greatest contribution to that is to recognize the difference between what we can do and what God alone can do, so we pray. But as we wait and pray and work, one of the foundational things we need is the ability to persuade. Under God it is our immense privilege and challenge to work to open hearts and minds to what we know is the best news ever.” Os Guinness, (From Interview in OUTREACH Magazine, March/ April 2016, p. 64)
Survival focuses on the appearance of the church. Putting more rouge on a dead church is a deception, not a resurrection. Rouge is cold comfort and never turns death into life. .
Revival focuses on the disappearance of man and the appearance of The Spirit of God. John the Baptist set the bar for those who would pave the way for a fresh movement of God. The road to Spiritual Awakening is built on the crushed pride of broken men, not on the words of proud of men.
“He must increase, but I must decrease” John 3:30
Prayer breathes fresh life into The Body of Christ. When the church is in need of a resurrection, planting more churches is admirable as long as they are not an appearance of life. Don’t be deceived. Planting another corpse is only a burial, not a revival. Don’t stop planting. Start praying. Why?
“The world will never believe in a religion in which there is no power. A rationalized faith, a socialized church, and a moralized gospel may gain applause, but they awaken no conviction and win no converts.” Samuel Chadwick
NOTE TO SELF: Do what you can do. Trust God to do what He can do. Make your next breath a prayer for the revival of the church, not a cry for the survival of it. Without a fresh breath from God, there is no survival. TALK LESS! PRAY MORE!
Dr. Gary Miller