It is hard to believe that it is already May and we all have been under a shelter in place for over a month. I have been praying for our Pastors and churches during this health crisis. If you have been like me, you have been seeking God to understand what He is trying to say to us through this time. I believe that God has allowed this to happen and when you think about it, our activities that we have been accustomed to have been suspended. When I think about this, I can’t help to think that God is getting our attention because we have allowed our activity to take much of our time and now we have no excuse to spend more time in God’s word and in prayer. I know that is what I have seen happen in my own life. Of course the question is whether we are going to go back to normal and what we are use to after the restrictions have been lifted, or have we changed our mindset that we will be more committed to Christ in our daily walk and realize that we are really being the church when we are ministering to people in our communities. A few days ago, a Pastor from our Association shared a text from Glen Sheppard whom many of you know. I want to share with you his text:
“The tide of prayer is rising and the hearts of people are becoming desperate but I have yet to hear the travail of the bride crying out for pruning and purity. Jesus’s words in chapter 15 of the Gospel of John clearly calls the Church to “pruning” repentance. I fear we are praying for protection far mare than pruning. Only when we are fully yielding to the vinedresser’s full pruning will we bear much fruit. Holiness will become the norm, purity will be treasured and the joy of the Lord will be evident as we become salt and light in a very dark age. The pruning has just begun and I fear that we will be so anxious to return to “business as usual” until we are at risk of missing the honor that can be ours as we bring glory to the Father no matter the cost to our lives, systems, institutions, and idols. May our hearts be so yielded to the Master until we gladly received whatever He chooses to send our way that we may be called back to His heart and anointing power. O that worship services would once again be filled with the Glory of God instead of the entertainment of men. We have submitted programs, strategies, and mechanical sounds when what we need is travail at the alter until the fire falls. May the tide of prayer increase until we travail before the Lord stripped of all of our man made systems and willingly yielded to His full Glory!”.
Friends let those words sink in for a moment. I believe that Bro. Glen had shared some very profound words and I believe this is the message we need to hear as the Church. We have been given a blank slate and if we miss this opportunity to surrender everything to Christ, and begin sharing the Gospel with the lost, we have failed. I pray that we will not go back to “business as usual” but we will be the church God has called us to be! May that be our prayer!