I was awakened this morning by a powerful dream. There were no angels, no out of body experiences, just a prayer. In fact I dreamt I was praying one phrase over and over again: “Revive us Lord, lest we all perish.” I woke up with tears on my face, and this one phrase echoing in my ears, and for some unexplained reason I felt a great sadness, as though a physical weight was pressing down upon me.
For too long the house of God has been in what I have coined as standby mode, awaiting revival. Our expectant hopes have given way to disinterest and indifference allowing the tendrils of slumber to grab hold of our hearts, dragging us into an ever-deeper sleep. While we sleep the sleep of the indifferent, Christ still agonizes in the garden of Gethsemane. Under the watchful eye of our blemishes we slumber hoping that eventually we will be awakened. Nothing stirs us any longer, nothing disturbs our fitful sleep, and with a wave of a hand we dismiss the signs that are all around us.
We have fallen asleep in the warm bed of strange doctrine, each more comfortable and tolerant than the last. The security of our salvation is eternal. We will not go to judgment, but merely pass from death to life. Salvation is by grace, and our works matter not. We will traverse the wrath of the end days unaffected, flying high above them like eagles soaring above the clouds. The rapture will come, of course before any sign of tribulation is apparent, and the seal of the Spirit will ensure our coming into possession of our entire inheritance, after having received our first installment here on earth by way of material excess and a life of opulence.
The new Jesus not only heals our diseases, but fills our wallets too. Our preachers speak in monotone, monotonous and unconvincing clichés hoping only to induce an even deeper slumber so no one notices as they pick clean the pockets of their flock.
If some pathetic appeal to righteousness, repentance, holiness and sanctification attempts to disrupt our sleep, we have hundreds of well practiced, impeccably delivered, un biblical comebacks to silence those who would be rude enough to stir us from the static state we have so come to be comforted by. Slowly but surely we are becoming an inert mass, useless and powerless, a sleeping giant content only with a full wallet and a full stomach.
What I wonder will be that which stirs us from our slumber, that which brings about the awakening so many are hoping for? Will it be a new doctrine, a new crisis, suffering, perhaps persecution? My honest answer is I do not know. Perhaps all these things at once, perhaps a perfect storm of unexpected events that will bring us to our knees that will stir in us the spirit of humility, or perhaps something else none of us has thought of. Only God knows. What I do know is that we need an awakening.
We have become materialists not through our philosophy, but by the vocation of the tangible, wherein we have become more interested in the blessings of God, than the God of blessing. False teachers have called us to His banquet table for the love of the goods that are upon it, not for love of the One who sits at the head of the table. They have spoken to us so often and eloquently about the miracles of the Lord, that they have overshadowed the Lord of miracles. Trusting, we followed, seeking prosperity and health rather than fellowship and intimacy with Him, which would have been enough, sufficient, more than any man could have asked for. Even if His grace were sufficient for one such as Paul, it would seem that it is no longer the case in this generation. Grace was all well and good, but what we really wanted was prosperity, and cars, and homes, and boats, health and diplomas, big names, adoration and popularity.
Our prayers have become an expression of our own egotism, and rarely have we sinned against God in a more deplorable manner than when we prayed in such a way. The sacred time, the time reserved for being in His presence, and having fellowship with Him, has been transformed into a time of begging.
Where is the love for God in the church? When was it that we abandoned the notion of foregoing gold and silver for His love? When will we once more thirst for Him? When will we once more run to Him as a child runs to its mother? When will He, and not the toys and the trinkets of this world once again satisfy us?
Overcome by the frigid cold of indifference, a cold that has settled into our very bones, we realize, perhaps now more than ever that the only path to a new awakening is by way of the fire of Christ’s love. Nothing will scatter the darkness faster, or chase away the paralyzing cold from our hearts, than the light of His face shining down upon us. He will transform us only when we seek Him for what He is, not for what He can give us.
Revive us Lord awaken us, lest we all perish, caught in the undertow of this world and all its false idols. Revive us Lord, and awaken us that we may live for you and you alone.
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.