By: Chuck Land, Senior Pastor, Crossbridge Church
April 19, 2018
Revival starts with the leader. As the leader goes in their personal passion for the Lord and the things of God, so goes the church. There is a lot that goes into a leader seeking revival in his soul for things of God, but if you bring it down to one simple statement, it is “being with Jesus.” In Acts 4:15, Peter and John are before the Jewish leaders testifying to the gospel of Jesus Christ after being arrested. The scriptures say, “Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus.”
I love the description of Peter and John, “uneducated, common men”. A leader does not have to have multiple degrees of being extraordinarily gifted to experience God’s reviving power and presence in his life. The key is that they had been with Jesus. Church leaders, before they are characterized by their incredible vision casting, strategic planning, communication and contextualizing skills, should be known as people who have been with Jesus.
Being with Jesus in His word and prayer is what keeps our hearts soft and minds sharp to the ways and will of God. It is what makes us fear God more than man, so we can be bold in declaring the truths of the gospel. It is what makes us love people and believe that everybody needs Jesus, and we should do whatever it takes for them to know about Him. Being with Jesus is what keeps leadership from being just a job or a duty and helps it stay a fresh calling. It is what stokes the flame of ongoing personal renewal in our lives, and it is what we need most to bring revival to our souls when that flame has started to wither by the worries of life and flurry of our pace.
As we pray, plan, plant churches and pursue revival so that the Houston church might rise in truth, love and good deeds and so that every man, woman and child might have to the opportunity to hear and respond to the Gospel, let us remember to be satisfied with His unfailing love (Psalm 90:14), to abide in Him and His love and let His words abide in us (John 15:7). Let us be set on fire by being with Jesus so that we can spread the flame to others and the city will see the warmth, love, passion and joy that comes from a revived church of common people that have “been with Jesus”.
When will you be with Jesus, Friend? Is it on your calendar? Is it a priority? Oh, how we long for real revival by the power of the Spirit in our city, and may it start in you and me from being with Jesus.
Lord Jesus, because You came to be with us and give Your life for us, we can be with You. Draw our hearts and minds away from the hurry and flurry of our frenzied culture. Help us to put down our devices so we may take up your word and let your Spirit breathe life into us. How we need You Lord! We need you to revive, sustain, strengthen and satisfy our souls in Your unfailing love. Meet us as we seek to be with You. In Jesus name we pray,