I don’t know what the word “revival” means to you, but I know exactly what it means to me. It means a week-long meeting with an out-of-town evangelist who preaches every night (and sometimes in the morning) calling Christians to get right with God and exhorting sinners to be saved. It also means “cottage prayer meetings,” banners in front of the church, handbills taped to the window of Bradford’s Drug Store, special choir practice, evening services that start at 7:00 and end about 8:30 with a passionate altar call where we would sing “Just As I Am” over and over again waiting for “one more person” to come to the front. I have many sweet memories of listening to Angel Martinez preach night after night at the church where I grew up. I still remember some of his sermon titles – “The Sweetest Music This Side of Heaven” (on John 3:16-in the key of “Be Saved” he said) and “Is Your Home on the Rock or on the Rocks?” A few years later our high school group brought in a young man named Kenny Edmundson to preach for four days in May, 1970. That was the first great move of the Spirit I ever personally witnessed, and I have not experienced anything to match it in the nearly three decades since then.
Over the years I have learned that there is a big difference between a week of meetings and a true, heaven-sent revival. Some of the “revivals” of my youth were not revivals at all. They were simply week-long meetings at the church.
Today we hear conflicting voices. Some people say that the world has gotten so corrupt that genuine revival is not possible. Others look to certain movements that stress outward phenomena-such as “holy laughter”-as proof that revival has come to our land.
Is true revival possible today? What would it look like in a local church? What precedes it? What should we do while we wait for revival to come to our churches? In order to answer these questions, Calvary is hosting an important conference on February 19-20 called “When God Moves: Preparing For True Revival.” Featuring Dr. Erwin Lutzer and Dr. John Armstrong, this conference will rekindle your faith while informing your mind with solid biblical teaching. I hope that every elder, deacon, deaconess, Sunday School teacher, Awana worker, Caraway Street leader, choir member, worship leader, usher, greeter, Wednesday night helper, youth leader, LifeCare counselor, and everyone else in the church, will make plans to attend.
You can register in the Resource Center at the church, or use our on-line Web Form. Won’t you join me as we meet together to seek God’s face for a genuine revival in our time?