Non-Christians’ lack of interest in spiritual matters is often a result of Christians’ lack of prayer. Their unconcern may be a result of our unconcern. Why should sinners be concerned about hell when it has been years since we have wept over lost souls? Our lack of tears and lack of prayer should drive us to one conclusion: We need revival in our personal lives, our churches, and our world.
Charles Finney, the nineteenth-century revivalist and evangelist, was used of God to stir the church in America with the fires of revival. He dealt with a question that this generation also needs to seriously consider: When is there a need for revival among Christians?
His answer should stir us to prayer:
1. When there is a lack of brotherly love and Christian confidence among professors of religion, then there is a great need of a revival.
2. When there are dissensions, and jealousies, and evil speakings among professors of religion, then there is a great need of revival.
3. When there is a worldly spirit in the church.
4. When the church finds its members falling into gross and scandalous sins, then it is time for the church to awake and cry to God for a revival of religion.
5. When there is a spirit of controversy in the church or in the land, a revival is needful.
6. When the wicked triumph over the church, and revile them, it is time to seek for a revival of religion.
7. When sinners are careless and stupid, sinking into hell unconcerned, it is time the church should bestir itself.
The twentieth-first century church must confess that she stands in need of revival. Businessmen and women need to join together to pray. Mothers and fathers must cry out to God for a fresh outpouring of His Spirit. Students need to form prayer groups on campuses. We must pray!
–Adapted from The Prayer Factor by Sammy Tippitt
Gracious Lord, forgive me for being so caught up in myself, my family and my life that I no longer weep for the lost, or grieve over injustice. Revive my weak spirit and flood it with Your truth so that I will broadcast everything You are with everything in me. Help me to encourage others to pray so that in community we can seek Your face for revival in our homes and churches! We are desperate for a touch from You, Oh God! Without You we are weak and powerless. With You we can be a mighty force for the sake of Your kingdom!
Praise God for his everlasting power and goodness. Thank him for sharing his power with you in Christ. Confess those times when you tend to trust in your own power and strength. Commit yourself to focusing on God’s power at work within you. Ask God to fill you with a renewed awareness of his presence within you.
Ask God to enable you to show unconditional love to people who do not yet know Christ and his everlasting power.
“No day is well spent without communication with God.” —Anonymous
–Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend