Today is the 37th day of our coronavirus shutdown. I stumbled onto something interesting last night (4/21) just before sunset. I was drawn to the diminishing sunlight out the family room windows. There was a partially clear sky following the severe storms that had passed through. There was a glorious spring scene before me – the buds, blossoms, flowers, and brilliant colors in the sky and trees, along with chirping birds, singing that the day was done.
What struck me in that moment was that creation did not get the memo to shut down, that we are in a pandemic. Nature has not stopped; it is not in hiding or isolation. The earth is revitalizing as it always does every April into May. There is nothing that will stop the flow of God’s good growth, his creative, resurrecting, reviving power. I believe this is true for all believers as well.
Psalm 85 has often been called “The Revival Psalm.” Verse 6 asks God, “Will you not revive us again, that your people may rejoice in you?” A good prayer, hoping for the day we can get back to church, to work, to school, to live life as we know it, and to see God expand his kingdom.
We will experience an abundance of life.
Some have defined “revival” as being brought out of a state of spiritual comatose [sic], an interesting concept for our times. There are 16 occurrences of the words “revive,” or “revived,” or “reviving” in the Bible. Fourteen of them are in the Old Testament. Each is derived from the Hebrew word chayah, which means to live and to have life; to remain alive and to sustain life; to be quickened from sickness, discouragement, faintness, or death; to be restored to life or health, to cause to grow. Revival then suggests the idea of living; it suggests the idea of lasting and it suggests the idea of lifting up.
Will you not pray with me, “Restore us, O God our Savior; revive us again, O Lord!” Spring is alive all around us; God’s people can be quickened as well, even in a pandemic. There has been much death and suffering, we mourn with those who mourn today. There is a greater percentage (99%) of us who will come through this stronger. We will be well; we can be alive in Christ today, tomorrow, and forever. We will participate in a great spiritual harvest in the days ahead. Many will come to faith, turning to God and being revived. This is the memo I want to share with you.
Be well; be safe; be hopeful and ready spiritually; we will be together again soon. I sure miss you all!
In Christ’s love, Pastor Tim