Will I Enjoy Revival When It Comes?

“Will I enjoy revival when it comes?”
I remember thinking to myself in the Fall of 2018 during a prayer meeting. 

At this point, I had been in Athens for about 3 months and knew revival was expected for this city. Many pastors and prayer ministers said it would look like mass amounts of people putting their trust in Jesus in this city. Others suggested it might look like open prayer meetings and worship in university classes. Still others talked about the healings and miracles that will happen right out in the open. And above all, it would look like Jesus getting all the glory. 

As I stood there in a prayer meeting, watching the leader get excited about lives being changed by Jesus, either with an awakening or not, I froze. 
And I asked myself “will I enjoy revival when it comes?” And the follow up thought was “why am I asking this question?”

As I left that prayer meeting those two haunting questions followed me – for months. 

The truth is, at that time in my life, I would not have enjoyed any of what the pastors and leaders talked about. I felt that revival would disrupt my comfort-zone and it would disrupt my plans and intentions for my life. Moreover, the idea of people repenting and turning to Jesus made me angry and I felt like I would not be acknowledged for my faith in the Lord that has lasted through the seasons. 
And then, I revisited Jonah. More correctly, God told me to read Jonah. And so, I did. 
But I didn’t get it the first time. So, I reread it. Five different times. And then, something shifted.

(Reader, I am being this honest with you because it is imperative we examine our hearts for the Bible tells us out of it flows the rest of our lives.)

Jonah was a prophet who received a word from the Lord to “go to Nineveh and call out against Nineveh’s sin.” Jonah did the exact opposite and fled to a different city, Tarshish. You may already know the story; Jonah gets swallowed by a fish (sent by God) and finally he goes to Nineveh and preaches repentance to them. And guess what? The people of Nineveh repent!! And Jonah? Well, he loses his cool.  
The Bible says “it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was angry” that God turned from the disaster He was going to bring upon Nineveh.  
Jonah prays to God and says “‘O LORD, is not this what I said when I was yet in my country? That is why I made haste to flee to Tarshish; for I knew that you are a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love, and relenting from disaster. Therefore, now, O LORD, please take my life from me, for it is better for me to die than to live.” (Jonah 4:2-3, ESV). 

And the Lord’s response?
“And the LORD said, “Do you do well to be angry?” (Jonah 4:4

I like the NIV’s version of this question: 
 “But the Lord replied, “Is it right for you to be angry?” (Jonah 4:4


And now, a new question haunted me: “Is it right for you to be angry?” 
I wrote that question down and posted it in my bedroom wall. Every day I saw it for 2 years and every time I did, I prayed for myself to have a heart that would be excited and ready to partner with Jesus in the work of awakening. I prayed for my own repentance more than I did this city. 

The truth is friends, God is going to awaken this city and this earth, whether we like it or not. He is going to do it! He is the Lord of All, the Rock of Ages, the Creator, the Alpha and the Omega – it does not matter what I think about revival, He’s going to do it. 

Though, I do really want to make sure that I am excited about what God is excited about: people coming to know Him. (And I want that for you to!) 
I want to make sure I am helping in the efforts of brining awakening to this city, not standing idly off to the side, complacent in my own lack of faith and love – or worse, getting in the way of a move of God. 

Now, 3 ½ years later, I can tell you I am so excited for God’s revival. I am so so excited to see professors and classmates open to the Only One who can satisfy. I am so excited to see God’s glory displayed and people repenting from the sin holding them back from God. I am so excited to see Jesus magnified in Athens and this world. 

I have no doubt I will “enjoy” revival because I know my heart can only be satisfied by God. I know my soul was made for Him. And I know I can trust Jesus to provide and care for me even amid a large awakening. 

He is good. And He is coming. 

Are you excited for His arrival?

Author | Samantha Richey

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