[Column] Yearn for Revival and Pray

Hallelujah! The New Year will bring all of you many great blessings from God. As you walk each day in faith, God will make your path straight and grant you prosperity (Gen 1:22; 12:2). Prophet Habakkuk prays in Habakkuk 3:2, “I stand in awe of your deeds, LORD. Repeat them in our day, in our time make them known.” May this also be our prayer. The same verse in King James Version reads, “O LORD, revive thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known.” The key word here is “revive.” What does the word revival mean? It is an act of God in which He pours a new life unto us; it is His wondrous act of causing us to live again. To be more precise, the word “revive” means to obtain a new life through God’s Spirit and to enjoy God’s abundant blessing. I pray that this year all of you will receive sevenfold blessing from God (Isaiah 30:26).

We are to yearn for the revival of God’s Kingdom as did prophet Habakkuk. The time in which Prophet Habakkuk lived was one of the darkest and most sinful periods of the Kingdom Judah. Having directly heard from God about the impending destruction of Judah and Jerusalem, Habakkuk is troubled.

However, he also receives a hopeful message from God that the Kingdom of God will be built up in spite of the destruction of Judah. According to God’s revelation, Jerusalem fell and its people scattered all over the world. As this story suggests, God’s people are not always safe from trials. I cannot guarantee that your life this year will be nothing but wonderful. But I can guarantee you that even your trials can strengthen your faith and serve as an instrument to reveal God’s glory. If you hold on once again to the Word of God, you will triumph. That’s not only my guarantee but also God’s promise.

Man’s desolation is the starting point of God’s hope. Although composed of the same element, carbon, charcoal and diamond exhibit two different physical characteristics. The former is opaque while the latter is transparent. It is said that diamond is created under enormous pressure. In the New Year, discouragements and desolations may attack us. Nevertheless, we can manifest God’s light and glory as we overcome these pressures of life. If we do the work of God, He will take care of us. Do you desire many great blessings in your home? Do you want the success of your business? Do you long for health and peace of mind? Do you want all your prayers answered? Yearn for the work of God and revival and all blessings will follow. “planted in the house of the LORD, they will flourish in the courts of our God”(Psalm 92:13). “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matthew 6:33).

Revival may be a gift from God but it just doesn’t fall into our lap. The sacred instrument to attain revival is prayer (or worship). There is a well known Bible verse in Habakkuk: “the righteous will live by his faith” (Habakkuk 2:4). The righteous do not refer to those without sin. Rather, the term refers to those who depend not on themselves but on God. Those who depend on God are also those who pray. We can be righteous through heartfelt repentance and prayer. God works out history through the prayers of the righteous (James 5:16). As someone once said, “Prayer is a switch to the heavenly generator.” Our prayer invites the Spirit of God (the Holy Spirit) into our hearts (Habakkuk 3:3). Only when the Holy Spirit descends, can our souls, families, businesses, and churches revive. Therefore, let us earnestly implore the Holy Spirit to touch us.

How do we determine if God’s Spirit is present with us? In Ephesus are two signs of the infilling of the Spirit: praising the Lord, and giving thanks to God always. Ephesians 5:18-20 say, “Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” If we are continually offering praise and gratitude to God, then we are indeed filled with the Spirit. On the other hand, if we curse, complain, and speak negative things, the Holy Spirit will grieve in our hearts (James 3:8-10).

In diagnosing tree diseases, a botanist first examines the root because the cause of disease is mostly found in the root. When there are spiritual diseases affecting the faithful, the heart and mouth must be first examined. If there are no praise and thanksgiving in our hearts and mouths, the root of our spiritual life is diseased. If our lips utter negative words in place of praise and gratitude, we must immediately repent and come before God. We must pray for the work of the Holy Spirit and God’s touch in our hearts. We will live again only when the Spirit of God descends upon us for the Spirit is the giver and reviver of life.

The following are the lyrics to a Korean CCM song. May they be our prayer:

O Heavenly King, Lord of Mercy, see the barrenness of the land
Grant it forgiveness and heal it
As we become one to lay again the foundation that has collapsed
Send down the fire of the Spirit to burn our idols
Let the fire of revival burn brightly
Let the Word of the Truth renew this land
Let the river of grace ever flow by the wind of the Spirit
Grant us the new day filled with Your glory, O Lord.
May Your Kingdom be established in this land.

Let us pray that God’s Kingdom will come upon our businesses, families, church, and every corner of Hawaii. This is God’s message for you: “I will surely bless you and give you many descendants (Hebrew 6:14). May each and every one of you find yourself in the center of God’s wondrous dreams and revival in the New Year of 2012.

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