In the coming days, all of the interest, desire, and prayers for God to revive our land could become nothing more than the spiritual equivalent of “one step forward, two steps back” if we don’t see the very real, unseen obstacles to revival that are in our midst. Whether America’s next Great Awakening is coming next year or in the next century, every Christian who prays for revival will face obstacles sooner or later.
The potential barriers are so deceptively present that I believe they could be keeping you and me from seeing, from even experiencing, what God is doing in our nation right now. As we explore five obstacles to a Jesus-Now Awakening, let’s anticipate them, so that we can overcome them.
Obstacle 1 “We can do this thing!”
Lewis Drummond summarizes the first obstacle to revival: “But here’s what I think has happened. Though individually we are to humble ourselves, pray, seek God’s face and turn from our wicked ways, many Christians, particularly pastors, have fallen into what author, preacher, and theologian Stephen Olford calls ‘evangelical humanism.’ This is a determined, well-meaning faith that says, ‘We can do this thing! We can grow our church! We can be the people God wants us to be.’ Such an ‘if/ then’ approach says, ‘If you do these five things, God’s blessing is bound to happen.’ While humility, prayer, seeking after God, and repenting from our wickedness are things God calls us to do, merely trying to ‘work them out the best we can’ may stand in the way of real revival.”
The relevant questions we need to be asking ourselves are these: Do I long for God’s forgiveness and healing in this country— a movement that can come only from Him? Do I want to be part of an extraordinary movement of the Holy Spirit in this nation? If your answer to both is yes, if deeper spiritual life is what you seek, then be ready to experience two very distinct and opposing forces in this Jesus-Now Awakening: God’s infinite desire to bring our nation to Himself and our imperfect human nature that causes us to look out for ourselves.
John 15:5 New King James Version (NKJV)
5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.”
Matthew 19:26 New King James Version (NKJV)
26 But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
Psalm 2:10-11 New King James Version (NKJV)
10 Now therefore, be wise, O kings;
Be instructed, you judges of the earth.
11 Serve the Lord with fear,
And rejoice with trembling.
To stay up-to-date with Jesus Now Awakening:
Phillips, Tom (2016-11-01). Jesus Now: God Is Up to Something Big (Chapter 6 p. 134-136). BroadStreet Publishing Group LLC.