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Rev. J.

Patrick Bowman
P.O. Box 1386
The Dalles, OR 97058
revjpbowman@gmail.com
541-980-8310

North American Rights


© Rev. J. Patrick Bowman, 2009
Pages: 5
Word Count: 831

Where Does Revival Happen?


By
Rev. J. Patrick Bowman

Where does revival happen? The fires of revival are ignited in the hearts of men
and women who have cut kindling with prayer, struck the flint with faith, and have
called on the wind of the Holy Spirit to fan the flames.

Cutting kindling with prayer

Cutting prayer of this kind exposes the indifference of our hearts. As we become
aware of our heart condition we also become aware of what brought about our dis-
ease in the first place. Charles Finney, (1792-1875), a major force in the Second
Great Awakening, used omissions and commissions to point out what conditions
within us feed dis-ease and hinder revival.

Finney lists a neglect of gratitude, regular reading of the scriptures, prayer,


family and private duties, self-denial, and watching over fellow believers as the
things we fail to do. I believe these neglects can be thought of as neglecting a
diet low in fat to help control our cholesterol. This same omissions list points
to a lack of love for God, a good spiritual attitude, lack of seriousness, and a
lack of love and concern for humanity at large, as contributing to our condition,
as well. In my mind, these can be thought of as a lack of nutrients the body
needs to function properly.

Finney then turns to the active sin in our lives in the commissions list. This
includes worldly-mindedness, pride, envy, and a critical spirit, slander, lying,
cheating, robbing God, and keeping others from useful service. Think of these as
the junk food we eat that contributes to the high cholesterol that contributes to
a hardening of the arteries that feed our hearts with life-giving blood.

These omissions and commissions from the writings of Charles Finney come from a
man who brought an estimated 250,000 souls to salvation through his preaching.

Striking the flint with faith

One of my favorite sayings is this: “The Kingdom of God is here and now, for those
with eyes to see it, hearts to receive it, and hands to make it happen.” It’s not
enough to see the Kingdom or receive the Kingdom. We must strike the flint of
faith and step out to realize the Kingdom. God’s Word, in Hebrews 11, says, “Faith
is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” The
substance of the Kingdom is the seeing and receiving. The evidence comes when we
step out in faith to loose the Kingdom of God into every situation, every aspect
of our lives and the lives of those around us. The evidence is something that can
be measured. The evidence is the manifestation of the substance of those things.
This can be thought of as hoping to light a room. You have the lamp and the
electricity. This is the substance. But until you move and turn the lamp on, with
conviction of the truth that the lamp and electricity will provide light, no
evidence of the substance is manifest.

There is no verb form of faith in the English language, so we’ve been lulled into
thinking that faith is a thing; a thing we can pick up and look at, examine, and
send to committee to determine what we are to do with it. Faith is a verb, an
action word. It’s God’s intent that we act upon it, with conviction and holy
fervor, to establish the present age manifestations of the Kingdom.

Calling on the wind of the Holy Spirit

With kindling in place by prayer and the fire lit by faith, we now need the wind
of the Holy Spirit to fuel our small fire until it becomes an all consuming fire
before us.

Acts chapter 2 tells the story of how the wind of the Spirit came one day to a
group of disciples who had set themselves apart in prayer and in faith had set
their fire to burning; a burning desire to experience the Promise of the Father,
the power from on high.

And when the time was right, there came the sound of a mighty, rushing wind, and
tongues of fire rested on each of them, and they were all filled with the Spirit
and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.

The wind of the Spirit not only fed their fire but brought with it new fire that
fed them. Revival doesn’t rely on man’s power or might, but on the Holy Spirit,
the embodiment of God’s power and might.

Are you ready for revival?

Have you cut your kindling in prayer? Have you struck the flint with faith to
ignite a tiny flame? Have you asked the wind of the Spirit to come and feed that
tiny fire until it becomes a mighty blaze of God’s glory? Then expect God to use
you as an instrument of His grace. Allow that fiery glow to be a beacon to those
around you who need to experience God’s love and redemption through Christ Jesus,
our Lord.
Amen