Revival in da house!
I can hear that thunder in the distance
Like a train on the edge of the town
I can feel the brooding of your Spirit
"Lay your burden's down,
Lay your burdens down."
Revive us... with your fire!
So goes Robin Mark's wonderful song As Sure As Gold(Revival), and so went this week. For the last three years, Gospel Light Community Church has been hosting what we call "Back to School Revivals." The original concept was started by our youth pastor in 2006. Pastor Elyano had envisioned a youth camp, where we would take groups of youth for a week and really minister to them, but in a much less structured way than our current youth encounter weekends. Unfortunatly, the week before we were supposed to go, the camp cancelled on us, and we were left without a venue. He decided to do it anyway, opening it up to the entire church. Thus began the Back to School revival.
Our speaker for that first - and both subsequent - revivals was Pastor Brian McDonald of Glad Tidings Assemblies of God in Corpus Christi, Texas. Pastor Mac had been Pastor Elyano's youth leader at one point, and the two had remained friends. For this year's revival, we had services on Thursday and Friday night and Sunday morning and night.
Thursday night's message was called Reach Again. Everyone was ripe with anticipation, as we all remembered the previous years' revivals. But more importantly, there were so many new people in the building. We had gone out as an entire congregation Wednesday night and invited, knocked on doors, handed out letters. Members had been handing out flyers for weeks. We plant the seed and God brings the harvest. Pastor Mac encouraged us to keep reaching for God. Proverbs 24:16 says "For a righteous man may fall seven times and rise again..." While this was not the text of the message, this was the crux of it - that if we keep reaching for God, He will reach for us.
Friday night's message was Eat the Fat, Drink the Sweet. The text was Nehemiah, chapter 8. Pastor Mac reminded us that although there is time for suffering and sorrow, there is also time for joy, celebration and most importantly, blessing. All to often as Christians, we focus on the bad, and not enough on enjoying life.
Friday night we were also blessed by some visiting youth groups. One, from a church in nearby Shelton, presented a short skit, which was really very good. Pastor Elyano had seen it before, and asked them to come. The message of the silent skit really ministered to our hearts.
More to follow...