We all have our own ideas of what revival looks like, or at least what we think it should look like. Most of those ideas are based on what we’ve personally witnessed in past years. However, God doesn’t always consult with us to see how we think He should do things before He does them. Sometimes, God does things differently than we might expect.
I’m reminded of stories in the Bible when people, no doubt, expected God to do things one way but He did something differently. I can imagine the Children of Israel never expected to defeat Jericho by marching around the city, or shouting at that wall. They probably expected a show of military might, or of strategic genius, but victory came thought obedience. I’m sure King Saul wasn’t expecting deliverance from the Philistines, and their champion Goliath, to come through a teen-aged shepherd boy who wasn’t even old enough to be in the army. Yet David fought for Israel, and God fought for David. I doubt that Peter expected to have money to pay his taxes by catching a fish and finding a coin in its mouth, but that’s what happened at Jesus’ command.
We should remember that God says, “My ways are not your ways…” (Isa. 55:8-9). I’m steadfast in my belief that what God is doing among us, and in many other American churches, is unlike what we’ve seen in the past or even have expected for our future. I believe that God has likely done things this way before, but our experience is so limited that we may not have seen it.
I was talking to a pastor last week who had heard about God doing some miracles here in our fellowship. He told me that he had been confronted with a woman who was in need of healing from cancer, and was reminded of what God had done in Sister Edith’s body with the removal of tumors, so he decided to pray for that woman right then and there! I earnestly hope and expect to hear a good report from that prayer. I talked to another pastor this morning who has been in ministry for more than 40 years. He told me that he had witnessed God move this past weekend in a way he had never seen. God had given such specific information to a man of God about a woman they were praying for, that it was absolutely astounding. That woman was convinced of God’s power, she was touched and filled with the Spirit of God! I’ve heard others within the last month, people who have been in church all of their lives, say they have never felt God so strongly or seen Him move in such a powerful way.
My point is that we shouldn’t be surprised when God does something surprising. He does things His own way. He’s God after all! What we call revival is simply the restoration of what was once alive, back to a state of life or vitality! That’s what revive actually means and that’s what God is doing in His church! It might look different than we expected. It might sound different. It might even leave us a little perplexed, as was probably the case for the nation of Israel, for King Saul, and even Peter in the previous examples. God does things differently than we expect. Yet if God is the one doing it, it’s good… and I’m all in! How about you? Revive us Lord!!