From the Pastor’s Heart
In previous generations, some churches “held revivals” with the stated goal of converting sinners. Fiery sermons and stirring hymns were targeted at the unsaved, hoping they would respond to the invitation by walking the sawdust trail and repenting at the altar.
It’s rare these days for churches to attempt revivals of this kind. Usually such “old-fashioned” meetings are considered impossible to replicate. It’s difficult enough (some would say almost impossible) to get church members to attend services. So how in the world
could we hope to get hardened sinners to come?
So we’re not having a revival.
Instead, we’re hoping to have a spiritual renewal.
So what could spiritual renewal mean for us? It could mean renewed joy in worship. It could mean renewed enthusiasm in serving God. It could mean renewed hope in outlook. I believe we need all three.
If we are truly joyful in worship, our souls will sing for joy and our lives will be refreshed. That can make a vital difference in the impact we have on everyone we encounter.
If we are genuinely enthused in serving God, we will not burn out when the going gets tough but will persevere through the years.
If we are hopeful for the future, we can encourage others who are dismayed because of political chaos, war and natural disasters.
After all the storms of life subside, there will be a great calm. In the meantime, if we will trust the Lord and repent of our sins on a daily basis, we’ll be blessed with “joy unspeakable and full of glory.” (1 Peter 1:8).
And as an added blessing, others may be converted to the Christ we worship and serve. If we experience genuine spiritual renewal, who knows—we just might also experience an old-fashioned revival.