(Post by: Michelle Hobbs)
This afternoon I have been contemplating revival and the power of the Holy Spirit. As many of you will already know, our family made the three-hour drive to Wilmore, Kentucky on Sunday evening to see what was going on at Asbury University. It was a fun, spontaneous, family road trip. It sparked some great conversation between us. We had a sweet time of worship with the students of Asbury and others, like us, who came from outside the university to participate. It helped to snap us out of our routine a bit.
It left me thinking about some things. What is revival? How can I, personally, experience revival? Is revival limited to a certain place and time? How can I experience the full power of the Holy Spirit? How can I share that power with those around me?
Y’all know by now that I love books; especially old books! So, as I was sitting at my desk this afternoon, getting caught up on some documentation and meditating on these questions, one of the old books that adorn my desk caught my eye. It is a gem of an antique, published in 1897. How To Obtain Fulness of Power In Christian Life and Service by R. A. Torrey.
It is a well-loved copy that I found at an Ohio Christian University library giveaway. The title is barely visible on the worn cover. The pages are coming away from the cover. The thread binding is loose. The pages are yellowed, and there is underlining and notes throughout.
The inscription in the front says, “To Mr. John Isaacs, from Mr. & Mrs. Hadden, with best wishes for a Merry Christmas, 1901.” They then write the scripture (my favorite blessing in the Bible), Numbers 6: 24-26. “The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn His face toward you and give you peace.”
It’s a beauty!
I picked it up and opened it with anticipation that the Lord was going to speak to me through the writings of R. A. Torrey. I find, right away, that this little book was written for people, like me, who are seeking more. Torrey says, “From many earnest hearts there is rising a cry for more power: more power in our personal conflict with the world, the flesh, and the devil.”
Friends, are you seeking more power to deal with the world and to fight the flesh and the devil?
If we could grab hold of that power, we would have revival indeed!
Thankfully, the answer to finding that power is simple. Unfortunately, few of us are willing to put in the effort it takes to grasp it.
Torrey reminds us that, “the Bible statement of the way is not mystical or mysterious.” God makes it plain for us if we will only make the personal effort.
You see, here is the key… No one can do it for you. You must seek it out for yourself. Your faith cannot be that of your parents or spouse. It cannot be handed to you by a pastor. It cannot be gleaned from a gathering.
Psalm 62:11 says, “Power belongs to God.” He shares His power with us in His own Word – the Bible. If we want to make it ours, we must go to that great and holy book daily. We cannot simply pray for power and neglect the Bible; the very tool God gave us to obtain the power we seek. The Bible has the power to convict us of sin, to regenerate the sinner, to produce faith, to build up the believer, to make us wise, and to give us assurance of our salvation.
Power is also found in our connection with the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit’s work in the believer is to take that which belongs to God and make it ours. 1 Corinthians 3: 21 tells us that we should not boast in human leaders. All things are ours, personally. The Holy Spirit reveals Jesus and His glory to us, strengthens us, guides us to truth, and leads us into a holy life.
The fullness of power is within our grasp, believers! Our poverty and powerlessness can be explained in James 4:2, “You have not, because you ask not.” There is mighty power in prayer. Prayer reveals a true knowledge of ourselves and our needs, gives victory over temptation, governs our tongues, and connects us to God.
The Lord has reminded me through Torrey’s wonderful, old book that power and personal revival are attainable. Our lack of them, is because of our neglect of the tools and resources the Lord has provided for us.
There is a place where strength and power can always be renewed and revived. That place is in the presence of the Lord!
SO, WHAT IS YOUR RESPONSE?
= Have you experienced personal revival before?
= How is the Lord currently working in your life?
= What are you going to do differently?
A good word Michelle! I was struck yesterday how in Matthew chapter 3 John the Baptist came preaching the doctrine of repentance and on the heels of that message comes the phrase, “THEN Jesus came….” vs. 13. Repentance is always the precursor of genuine revival!
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