In our lives, we often lose focus of the true goal and the true mission. We often hear the word ‘revival’ but always expect someone to start it. The definition of a revival is this: “Revival refers to a spiritual awakening from a state of dormancy or stagnation in the life of a believer.” It is a spiritual awaking from a slumber. A revival is something that happens in our personal life; only then can we begin to affect the lives of others. It is time for us to wake up, truly pursue God above all else, and fulfill our calling to make disciples as we go throughout our daily lives. Only then can we experience a spiritual awakening.
Today we have a guest post by Haley Felder to discuss this, who would describe herself as having nothing special about her writing; simply a heart and a passion for sharing what God has told her.
What am I doing right now? Looking back on the last year, have I made a difference? What have I done to benefit the Kingdom?
Lately, I’ve been so caught up in me. It’s crazy/awesome how God can use just a few words from someone else’s mouth to show you how you can better love and serve Him. Sunday’s sermon’s main point was to “Love God and love people.” Five words… That’s such a simple yet complex and difficult course to take sometimes, but if we can simply do that, Christ will be glorified. So how do we get to that point? It’s a process of realizing and understanding what our purpose on this earth is. Our purpose is to glorify God. In order to restore perfect glorification of the Father, we must spread the Good News of the one who came to Earth as a holy and living sacrifice in order to provide us with a way in which we could be reconciled back to a perfect relationship and perfect worship despite our sin.
Life here on Earth is not about seeing who can make the most friends, throw the coolest parties, or have the most fun. Life is about honoring God and doing our part to be beacons of light for Christ that show others the hope and purpose they have in Him. No, I’m definitely not perfect at that or even really doing a good job at it, but I know for certain that I have a purpose in this world, and I am becoming more and more willing to take any measure I have to in order to fulfill my duty. I fail everyday at it, but “the cross has made me flawless.” Because of Christ’s perfect sacrifice, mine doesn’t have to be perfect. As long as we are striving to give Him glory, He is going to bless us; but in order for us to spread that hope to others, it is of utmost importance that we are living our lives humbly and fully dependent on Christ.
I’ve become increasingly more aware of my selfishness recently. So often I catch myself praying for God to take the reins of my life and give me His peace, joy and love but all the while worrying about what other people think of what I’m doing or stressing over the situations I have absolutely no control over. How selfish! He created me, fitting every single piece of me together perfectly so that I can breathe, speak, walk, and even think for myself; and His son came to Earth and lived a sinless life in the same exact world with the same exact emotions as me. Shouldn’t He be able to handle my struggles? All He asks of me is to depend on Him and give my life to Him as an empty vessel for His kingdom’s sake, and I do everything but that.
I tell Him I love Him, pray to Him, read His word, but I still fail to be the empty vessel He asks of me. So often, I skip out on spending time with Him to watch an episode on Netflix, scroll through Facebook and Instagram, or even just to get a little more sleep. It’s all about me so often. That’s not how it should be though. There’s no way to be an empty vessel for Christ if I’m too caught up in my fleshly desires to even spend a few minutes each day getting to know Him better and listening for Him to reveal the plans He has for me. It’s so hard to sacrifice my wants sometimes, but in those times I have to remind myself of Christ’s sacrifice. He came down, perfect, to a completely imperfect world for 33 years and did nothing but glorify God. He was tempted just like we are today, and He stood firm. We aren’t promised things will be easy, but if we depend on Him, He will deliver us. Christ was brutally beaten and hung on a cross. I know for a fact that was difficult, but that was His purpose for coming. My purpose may also have some trials along the way, but James 1:2-3 says, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.” Trials are sometimes necessary to grow us. For example, some of the biggest lessons I’ve learned in life have come from facing a trial. Take relationships for example. We often don’t realize how much a friend or family member means to us until we lose them. Or, on the flip-side, we may not realize the negative effects of a relationship on us until we are out of it. We have to learn to grow from our hard times and push on toward what’s to come. Romans 8:18 and 28 tells us that “our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us” and “God works for the good of those who love Him.” Living life for the sake of the Gospel won’t be easy, but it will be more than worth it.
The Bible is full of stories of men and women who gave all they had for Christ and still struggled or were even killed for their faith. Paul always comes to my mind first. Over the last several months, I’ve been reading through His letters, and I’ve been amazed by his faith and strength in Christ. He faced so much hardship, even prison for his faith, and still didn’t let any of it stop him from living a life fully devoted to the work of the Gospel. He pushed on in every trial with hope and joy because he knew that it was for the sake of the Gospel. If you’re going through a tough time, I highly encourage you to read some of Paul’s letters. (Galatians, Ephesians, and Philippians are just a few.) Let his endurance and boldness encourage you to keep pushing.
I started out by mentioning that this was all sparked by just a few words from someone else’s mouth. That someone could be you. Who will you speak life into today? Who needs your attention? Who needs to hear what God is teaching you? Who needs to hear of the hope you have in Christ? Wake up and pay attention to those around you who may also need a wake up call! Empty yourself and be a willing vessel for God’s glory. That’s all He asks of us.
I’m writing this because I understand this concept, but I don’t even fully realize my helplessness sometimes. Until we truly understand our helplessness, Christ won’t mean as much to us as He should. He should mean everything. Daily, I have to ask myself this question: what am I doing to strive toward that understanding and dependence on Him?
What is your purpose in life? If it isn’t to glorify God, then you really don’t have one. That is the only reason we were created. I don’t know about you, but when I die, I want to have made a difference or left an impact. What better way to do so than by striving to fulfill your intended purpose! I’m going to tell you exactly what I’ve been telling myself lately. You aren’t promised tomorrow so wake up and let the Lord give you purpose and use you! Stop wasting time. 1 Thessalonians 5:1-2 says, “Now, brothers, about time and dates we do not need to write to you, for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.” Will we be ready? This time next year, if He hasn’t come back, I want to be able to look back and know without a doubt that I emptied myself and let the Lord use me to make a Kingdom impact.
A Spiritual Awakening Starts With Me And You
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