We had a wonderful time of worship together during our revival services. It was great to see our church family come together. It was a blessing to be a part of it, and I have heard positive comments from so many of our members. With all that has happened, I can't help but think, what's next. We've had this incredible opportunity of coming together as a church family. This theme of spiritual renewal was no longer just a phrase but had become experienced reality for so many people, but what's next. Where do we go from here?
First, if you were convicted of sin or something that needs to change in your life, then you need to act upon it. Now is not the time to make new excuses or to ignore it any longer. It is time to go before God, repent, and turn to Him. Plain and simple, we all need Jesus. Turn to Him. Sin hinders our relationship with Him and entangles us in our spiritual walk, so we need to get it out of our lives. Christ is our Savior, and He is the only way to salvation. "Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord" (Acts 3:19-20a, ESV). If you made a decision of some type during the services, share it with someone. This helps to keep us accountable, and it is also a testimony for what God is doing in our lives. I also encourage you to write it down as a reminder.
Second, pause, take a timeout, or whatever else you want to call it, but have a quiet time with God. I'm not speaking of our regular quiet time here (yes, that's extremely important too), but rather a deliberate follow-up time for you and God. "Be still, and know that I am God" (Psalm 46:10a, ESV). Life is hectic and there are so many things vying for our time. So do what you have to do to make sure this happens, whether it means scheduling it in your calendar, or finding a place without any distractions. Let this be a time to reflect upon His goodness and who He is and what He has done. He has blessed us in so many ways. In the question of what's next, seek His guidance. If repentance is needed, then repent. Use this time as an opportunity to seek God's guidance on what's next.
Third, make an intentional effort to practice spiritual disciplines on a regular basis. We need to be reading and spending time in the Word of God. We need to be praying. This is one of those areas that we understand is important, but too often is neglected. Decide on a concrete, intentional plan. Perhaps it means starting off with ten minutes daily each morning or night, or maybe using part of your lunch break for a devotional time. You know your schedule. Find something that works for you and stick with it, even if it means starting off small and building it up over time.
Fourth, this needs to move beyond yourself. Not only is there a need to encourage and help other believers to grow, but there is a need to share the Gospel message with others. This can be intimidating at first, but don't let fear stop you from doing it. Share your story of what Christ has done in your life. Learn a basic way of presenting the Gospel (there are many examples – Romans Road, Four Spiritual Laws, Three Circles, FAITH, Bridge Model – find one that you're comfortable with that is based on the truth found in Scripture). Again, be intentional.
Fifth, find a ministry or area for you to serve. God has created you with unique gifts and talents. The easy route is to say that I'm unprepared or not equipped to serve, but it's just another excuse. We have to start somewhere. Use your gifts to serve and glorify God. It is rewarding, and helps us to grow.
Sixth, pray for continued revival. Spiritual renewal and revival needs to extend beyond our church family. Pray for the community around us. Pray for our nation. Pray for our world. Pray for opportunities for how God will use you and our church to make an impact to those around us and point others to Jesus.
Finally, continue to seek Christ and desire to grow in Him. Trust in Him. Wherever He may be leading you, obey and follow Him. This is a journey, an ongoing process that requires perseverance, endurance, and keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus. The wonderful part is that we're not in it alone. Christ is with us as well as our fellow believers. Strengthen and encourage one another.
This revival was a wonderful time for our church. Exciting times lay ahead. Pray about it. Seek Him. I look forward to seeing what God will do through our church. To God be the Glory.