The title of this message seems to be almost an impossible statement. How can we revive something that has not happened yet? The truth is what we do today affects our future. How you handle your life today; emotions, actions, relationships, your attitudes and reactions, will flow into your tomorrow.
If you keep carrying dead thoughts of your life or how you perceive yourself, you will be carrying those images into your future. It will become who you are. I want to plant good seeds now so that in the future I will be harvesting a good crop.
Imagine carrying a dead corpse everywhere you go. Remember dead corpse smell terrible and attract flies and other kinds of insects. This is what happens when we carry our dead thoughts into our future. People see and smell our stench, and like insects invading a dead carcass, the enemy suffocates us with his lies and schemes and it brings even more decay and decomposing. We will end up settling for so much less then why we were created. God has a destiny for your life. Don’t allow your past or present mistakes to infest your future.
Not only can people see and smell our stench, but we are carrying something that will never benefit us. Dead things have no life. There is no advantage of bringing your past into your future. The past is just that; past! It is past away and you will never be able to relive that moment again. If you are constantly thinking about your past it would be like sitting on the ground right next to a dead body. It doesn’t speak to you. It doesn’t help you. It just reminds you of your fatal mistakes.
Don’t misunderstand me, we can learn from our past, just like we can learn from an autopsy of a dead body, but once we learn from it, discard the body and burry it once and for all. Trying to take something dead into our future will only bring frustration and magnify the lifeless carcass.
Psalm 42:2 (NLT)
“I thirst for God, for the living God.”
This verse expresses David’s thirst for God. He was young and strong, yet he knew only God could satisfy him. He had spent time in God’s presence playing his harp and tending sheep (the normal things of life for him). Spiritual thirst is as natural as physical thirst.
There are churches today that want revival but the people in the church seem to think that revival will suddenly appear and affect them. This is not how revival works. Revival happens by us doing our part. We have to eagerly pursue God. We need to develop a hunger for God on a daily basis. We have to be thirsty for the living God. The Bible says that if we are thirsty we should come buy and eat. What it costs us is our action and our will. What it cost is giving up our control and allowing God to have His way.
Isaiah 55:1 – 3 (Amplified Bible)
“WAIT and listen, everyone who is thirsty! Come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat! Yes, come, buy [priceless, spiritual] wine and milk without money and without price [simply for the self-surrender that accepts the blessing]. Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your earnings for what does not satisfy?  Hearken diligently to Me, and eat what is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness [the profuseness of spiritual joy]. Incline your ear [submit and consent to the divine will] and come to Me; hear, and your soul will revive; and I will make an everlasting covenant or league with you, even the sure mercy (kindness, goodwill, and compassion) promised to David.”
I was traveling in 1993 and 1994 to churches all over the Pacific Northwest area of the United States ministering in Churches. Everywhere I went I saw this complacency and lack of thirst. It broke my heart. I felt I was experiencing just a touch of what God was feeling. I wrote a song that I ministered to the churches during that time and the words were taken directly from Isaiah 55:1 – 3. The very first time I sang that song a young man came to the alter while I was singing it. He wept and wept at the alter. He longed to receive the Living Water from God and he also ached to see others drink as well. The song is called; “Come Buy and drink!”
John 7:37 (NIV)
“Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, ‘If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink.”
“… let him come to me and drink.” This takes action on our part. Again, revival doesn’t come to you, you go after revival!
Are you dehydrated in your heart, spirit, or emotions?
It is time you get wet. It is time you dive into the Living Water and drink of God’s goodness and soak in His presence. God’s Living Water will not only take care of any dehydration as you drink it, but as you allow God to saturate your entire being you will be a “living well” yourself.
Others will smell, see, and taste this Living Water from you as Living Water never sits still. Living Water is just that…living! This water can’t help but affect those around you. They are watching your life and seeing your joy and passion and they will want to hang around you. They might not know why, yet they have a desire to talk to you and overall want to spend time with you. These are the affects of your time spent drinking and soaking in the Living Water!
We need to get rid of our dignity.
It can prevent us from letting go of ourselves to experience something new in God. Who cares what people think of you. We should care more about what God thinks. He sees what truly is in our hearts and what we are thinking. We can’t hide anything from God. Why even try?
Our dignity can prevent us from experiencing more of God and it can prevent revival from coming in the future.
Do you have walls up that are preventing you from experiencing a revival in your heart? We need to see our humanity and His divinity and realize we are lost without Him. We need to get desperate for Him. Who are we to think we can survive without God in our lives, or maintain our life without giving God everything? This is a lie!
Are you tired of how your life is going today? What do you plan to do about it? What you change in your life today will benefit your future. Many people think their life will change by the Government, or by some rich uncle passing away and leaving them a load of money. When will they realize they are just wasting their life away? If you want change to happen in your life, if you want revival to come, do something about it! The first thing and the best thing we can do is pray for God to help bring change. Ask Him what your part is in changing your life. Don’t think you are too old or too young for change to come. Be determined to take the land that is rightfully yours. Caleb, at the age of 85 years old demanded, “Give me my mountain” (Joshua 14:12). That hill country was promised as an inheritance by God because Caleb “wholly followed the LORD God of Israel” (Joshua 14:14b).
Let’s follow hard after God!
Psalm 63:1-8 (KJV)
“ O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is; To see thy power and thy glory, so as I have seen thee in the sanctuary. Because thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee. Thus will I bless thee while I live: I will lift up my hands in thy name. My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise thee with joyful lips: When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night watches. Because thou hast been my help, therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice. My soul followeth hard after thee: thy right hand upholdeth me.”
This is a Psalm of David, when he was in the wilderness of Judah. He learned while in the wilderness how to follow hard after God by thirsting for water, it brought true meaning to thirsting after God.
God will always quench our thirst when we thirst and follow hard after Him. In these verses we can see that David learned how to worship God in the middle of a trial. He knew Who his source was. He remembered when he was laying in his bed who his help was. He praised God and meditated on Him “…When I remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night watches.” The word; “watches” (ashmûrâh) is translated; “watch, a period of time,” and the primitive root (shâmar) means; “properly to hedge about (as with thorns), that is, guard; generally to protect, attend to, beware, be circumspect, take heed, keep, mark, look narrowly, observe, preserve, regard, reserve, save, sure, wait, watch.”
In Bible times there were four watches (Matthew 14:25, Luke 12:38). David could be referring to the watches in the temple, or he could be referring to the watches at night with the guards which guarded his palace. At this point, he no longer was in the palace but the wilderness. I am sure he is remembering being with the congregation and in the sanctuary praising God. He is remembering on his bed, which could have been a rock for his pillow and dirt for his bedding, yet he is meditating on God and his goodness. David didn’t wait for a revival to come to him. No! He birthed it from his heart as he realized meditating on God, and the things of God, is better than meditating on himself and wallowing in self-pity. Remember he was running for his life from king Saul. He feared for his life. If David complained we sure would understand, yet this man of God decided to keep his focus on God, even in the night watches. Albert Barnes expresses this thought well in his notes on this verse:
“That is, when I lie down at night; when I compose myself to sleep. Nothing can be more proper than that our last thoughts, as we sink into quiet slumber, should be of God; of his being, his character, his mercy, his loving-kindness; of the dealings of his providence, and the manifestations of his grace toward us, during the day; and nothing is better suited to compose the mind to rest, and to induce quiet and gentle slumber, than the calmness of soul which arises from the idea of an Infinite God, and from confidence in him. Often when restless on our beds – when nothing else will lull the body to rest, the thought of God – the contemplation of his greatness, his mercy, and his love – the sweet sense of an assurance of his favor will soothe us, and cause us to sink into gentle repose. So it may be – so it will be – when we are about to sleep the long sleep of death, for then the most appropriate thoughts – the thoughts that will best prepare us for that long sleep – will be thoughts of God.”
“My soul followeth hard after thee…” (Psalm 63:8) is a revival statement! It implies action. I like how the Amplified Bible states this verse:
Psalm 63:8 (Amplified Bible)
“My whole being follows hard after You and clings closely to You; Your right hand upholds me.”
The word “hard” is translated dâbaq, which means: “properly to impinge, that is, cling or adhere; to catch by pursuit: abide, fast, cleave (fast together), follow close, be joined, keep, overtake, pursue hard, stick, take.”
All these are action words. We need to cling, pursue hard, adhere to and catch God. It is like two pieces of wood being glued together, inseparable! This is revival! It is not settling for the same thing over and over again. It is pressing in to touch God and not caring what the crowd will think (Luke 8:43 – 48).
Your future is bright. You can experience revival if you would start following hard after God today! Don’t let anything get in your way.
Love people into revival
Watching Jesus and his actions will show us how we are to respond to people. He loved them. He showed love when He healed the sick and raised the dead. He showed love when he wept when Lazarus was dead and raised him back to life. He moved with compassion to forgive the woman caught in adultery. He even loved the Roman soldiers who crucified Him with his statement, “Forgive them for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34).
It was part of His character and makeup. People were drawn to this love.
I believe with all my heart that if we love people walls will come down and revival will come. I have seen this in action where ever I travel and minister. I go in and love on the people, treating them like my true brother or sister that they are. This automatically brings down any walls or preconceived ideas they may have. They see that I am real and a “safe” person to be around. No one will let down their guard if they think you don’t care about them. Love conquers all.
Have you ever experienced the love of God to the point you felt free to be yourself, free to love others with the love He has given you? Within ourselves we do not and cannot love others unconditionally. God’s love is indescribable and yet all powerful. What do you do with a love like this? You fall in love with Him even more. In doing so you will change your character. You will begin to exude God’s love to others.
Revival of our future starts today! Don’t put off tomorrow what you can do today. Let go of any dead corpse you are carrying from your past and reach for the new God has for you to revive your future. Your future awaits for a new beginning.
From one revivalist to another,
Pastor Kris Belfils