Don’t think that I’ve forgotten. I haven’t lost my focus. I write of other things, and God speaks to other aspects of my life, but it is always there. It’s always in my thoughts – not always foremost, but constantly making its presence known. Revival is what I want. It is a God-given desire, and I hope for it. I pray for it. But there’s something else I must do. How will they know if they don’t hear?
Luke wrote little things that always catch my attention in his second letter to Theophilus. “The word of God increased, and people were added to the kingdom.” “Peter opened his mouth and said…” It is apparent to me that if I want revival so badly, obedience is in order. I say I have faith; I must show my faith by my works. Do I believe that our king can make dry bones live? Do I, really? Do I believe that we plant and water, but God gives the increase? And do I believe that God has ordained his sovereign work to be done through us sent ones? There is only one thing to do. Do I want to see people added to the kingdom? Let the Word increase! Do I want boldness and power? Let me open my mouth and speak!
Do I believe those things? Sometimes I do. I did when providence crossed my path with that of a less-than-comely tour guide when I was en route to buy some milk. I did when I spoke to the youth last week about prayer, and then again when I spoke with my small group of tenth-grade boys. I knew God was giving me words in those instances, and his will was being accomplished. I want those times to be more frequent. And I know they will be. I am not asking amiss.
I don’t want to miss any more opportunities. I’ve had great conversations with some of the other new people here. We’ve talked about culture, politics, international relations, learning styles, and teaching philosophies. It’s quite nice to be surrounded by people with whom good conversation comes so easily. But sadly, I hid my light from them. The last time I saw any of them, I had not yet remembered the power of God. I hadn’t yet remembered that he is in the business of restoring the waste places and giving us the nations. I was, at that time, timid and in need of those people’s approval. They were what I imagine I would be if I were not crucified with Christ, and I needed them to accept me. It’s amazing, isn’t it? Somehow, I’d forgotten how glorious God is, how omnipotent, how dangerous, and how passionate he is, and consequently, his acceptance ceased to be enough.
But even when we are faithless, he is faithful, because he cannot deny himself! And he hedges in our way! Even if we pursue other lovers (the approval of man, for example), we won’t overtake them. He will remind us of our first love and that it is he who has given us the wine, the bread, and all the treasures that we seek! He is doing this for me. I am beginning to remember why I was so willing to sell all of my possessions so that I could buy this field!
I don’t know why I haven’t seen any of those people in a while. Everyone lives and works right here in this complex. Everyone goes to the same restaurants, grocery stores, and coffee shops. I know that God is ordering all of our steps, and he has his reasons for the way things have panned out thus far. I trust him. And I anticipate what he will do. In the meantime, I am praying and seeking. I am diving into the word, so as to be washed with its water and transformed by the renewing of my mind. And of course, by God’s grace and through his Spirit’s power and leading, I intend to open my mouth and speak!