Saturday, June 30, 2007

Evangelism without Revival

Pastor Bob Roberts Jr. wrote in his book, "Transformation: How Global Churches Transform Lives and the World" that churches in America will focus on evangelism without spiritual renewal. Of course, evangelism is good and the church is commanded by Jesus to go and make disciples. But we do so without the power of the Holy Spirit.

Here are the words of Roberts...

"When I study the Great Awakenings in America, I'm intrigued by the fact that the surge of evangelism came not because of a massive crusade but through small, rural churches that touched their communities. In other words, evangelism was the result of an awakened church. Today, we practice evangelism without an awakened church. It's heartbreaking to consider how some have determined to grow big churches and do great evangelism but to do it totally apart from the awakening power of the Holy Spirit"

(Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2006, p. 25)

Let us pray hard that scores of people around us turn to Jesus, and that it is the result of revival.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

A Toaster Not Plugged In


I am writing this just a few blocks from Disney Land. Lois and I are here for the Baptist General Conference Annual Meeting. Yesterday I attended the Prayer Champions session. We were all given a book called, "Love to Pray" by Alvin Vandergriend. The opening words are...

"Human beings are created to live in fellowship with God. We are meant to have and to enjoy life in relationship with God. Without this relationship we are like branches cut from a tree, like toasters not plugged in" (p. 8).

Prayer is the means to keep the toaster plugged in.

Bryan (from Anaheim, CA)

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

How Important is the Church to Jesus?

How important is the church to Jesus? In other words, is the gathering of God's people on the heart of Jesus?

The the answer is "Of Course"! How do we know? Because 1 Peter 1.18-19:

For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver and gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.

The sinless and perfect Jesus was the only person qualified to shed blood for the church. The church was redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus. He died so that our gatherings could take place.

Thus, how important is the church to us?

Are we praying for her revival?

Bryan

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Prayer=Revival=Evangelism

Good morning. Andrew A. Bonar points out that revival in the church is essential to reach the lost people in the world:

“Revivals begin with God's own people; the Holy Spirit touches their heart anew, and gives them new fervor and compassion, and zeal, new light and life, and when He has thus come to you, He next goes forth to the valley of dry bones…

Oh, what responsibility this lays on the Church of God! If you grieve Him away from yourselves, or hinder His visit, then the poor perishing world suffers sorely!”


Let us continue to seek the face of a Holy God!

Bryan

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Are We Sluggish in Our Prayers?


We all have days when we are sluggish in our prayers. We have moments when the desire is not there. I remember such a time in college. I told my wife to be, Lois, that I had no desire to read my Bible and to pray. She simply said to me: "Pray that God will give you a new desire." That night I did ask God for a fresh desire, and as I prayed, something supernatural happened: God rekindled the flame in my heart!

Perhaps that is a key to our prayer life. In the classic book on prayer, The Hidden Life of Prayer, D.M. M'Intyre wrote: "Let us ask for a fresh gift of the Holy Spirit to quicken our sluggish hearts, a new disclosure of the charity of God. The Spirit will help us infirmities, and the very compassion of the Son of God will fall upon us, clothing us with zeal as with a garment, stirring our affectations into a most vehement (fervent, passionate) flame, and filling our souls with heaven" (p. 24).

Praying for Revival!

Bryan

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Is Prayer in Our Churches Increasing?

What is the prayer level in your local gathering of worship? Is there an increased interest in it? If so, that is good. Brian H. Edwards writes...

"A greatly increased interest in the prayer meeting is not only evidence of revival, it is also evidence that revival may be on the way" (Revival! A People Saturated with God, 84).

Involvement in prayer in any church can always improve. How devoted are you to corporate prayer?

Praying for Revival!

Bryan

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

POP (Parents of Prodigals)


This evening, we are doing something different for our weekly prayer gathering at Harvey Oaks Baptist Church. Our prayer focus will be on on our sons and daughters and grandchildren who have turned their backs to Jesus.

I learned that the Moody Church in Chicago does this. It is called "POP" and it stands for "Parents of Prodigals". We are also calling it "GOP" which means "Grandparents of Prodigals".

We want to storm the gates of heaven with our prayers tonight.

Perhaps God will send revival when the prodigals return home!

Bryan

Saturday, June 09, 2007

God's Response to Our Prayers.

Does it really matter if we pray or not? Yes!

John Wesley said: "God does nothing but in answer to prayer." John lived that out that statement because he prayed two hours per day.

Revival will not come unless we week the face and heart of God through pray.

Have a wonderful Lord's Day

Bryan

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Revival Begins with the Church


Revival is often misunderstood by Christians. They may say, "Let's have a revival so people (outside of church) can get saved!" Revival will save people but only after the Holy Spirit revives the followers of Jesus.

Revival begins in the church and then when God's people are made right, revival will spill over into the community.

Charles Spurgeon knew firsthand what revival was because his church in London was in a constant state of it. In the December 1866, Spurgeon explained the process of revival...

"To be revived is a blessing which can only be explained by those who have some degree of life. Those who have no spiritual life are not, and cannot be, in the strictest sense of the term subjects of a revival... A true revival is to be looked for in the Church of God" (quoted in Brian Edwards, Revival! A People Saturated with God, 27).

Thus, it is crucial that we continue to seek the face of God for revival within the Body of Jesus.

Have a great day

Bryan

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

What is Revival?

What is revival?

I think think Duncan Campbell's understanding of revival is the best...

"Revival is a community saturated with God"

How close are we today to this definition?

Let us keep seeking His face until revival comes to the church.

Bryan

Friday, June 01, 2007

The Hidden Lide of Prayer


I found a small book from my college days (Bethel College, St. Paul, MN). It called "The Hidden Life of Prayer" by D.M. M'Intyre. It is a goldmine filled with old quotes about prayer. Let me just quote the author today...

"The equipment for the inner life of prayer is simple, if not always easily secured. It consists particularly of a quiet place, a quiet hour, and a quiet heart" (p. 30).