“Everybody dies, but not everybody lives”. It’s likely we’ve all read that sentiment, but what does it actually mean?
Clearly the desire to live, to really live, is something we all resonate with but it would seem that people define “living” quite differently. Some people define “really living” as having an Instagram-worthy life, full of travel, adventure, and plenty of “likes”. Others define it as completing a bucket list of must-have experiences. To some, “really living” is filling their time with as many adrenaline pumping experiences as possible, like urban climbing to incredible heights and taking the selfie to prove it. Others look to romance and the perfect wedding to fulfill their dream of “really living”. These are all cheap substitutes for what God promises us.
In a profound way, we all crave to be brought to life and live fully. In a simple word, what we are all looking for is revival. Too often when we hear the word “revival”, we think of a shouting preacher or a drummed up emotional conference, rather than the true heart of revival, which is the outpouring of Jesus’ love on his people in a fresh new way.
The Bible is bursting with the concept of life lived to the fullest. Jesus said, “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10). Jesus Himself says that this is the reason that He came! Whether we know it or not, we are all in desperate need of a revival of our hearts: each of us individually, and altogether as a community at TWU. We must plug into the One who pours out incessant, abundant life.
Last year, I realized I was hungry for more. While I felt as though I had a theological framework of knowledge, spiritual wisdom, and moderate strength in my faith, my heart was weary. I knew that I needed to change something, so I took time off from school to go to YWAM in New Zealand. There, I spent my days pressing closer to God while backpacking through the beautiful landscapes of New Zealand and Nepal. Through seeking intimacy with God, His Spirit revived me.
While I was in Nepal, backpacking to remote villages, I was struck by the villagers. The very people I once felt sorry for – the people I am ashamed to admit I originally felt intellectually and spiritually superior to – were more alive than anyone I had ever seen. They were living out their faith in a way that was real and contagious. Their instruments were out of tune, and their songs off key, yet they were truly satisfied, and fully alive. I originally pitied them because they did not have any of the comforts I grew up with, but as I lived with them, I began to crave what they had. I’ve never seen the Gospel lived more purely and simply, and I’ve never seen Christians more servant-hearted and passionate. They knew the presence of the Holy Spirit and their lives were full of the fruit of it.
Through this I came to realize that I crave the simple Gospel. Forget the over complicated talk of “this denomination, that denomination,” or “Hillsong or Bethel?” The heart of the Gospel is beautifully simple: we are broken and in desperate need of God’s life changing presence, and His abundant life poured into and through us.
Coming back to campus this year, I have sensed something changing here. Through many conversations with hungry, burning hearts, I believe that revival is unfolding in a way that we’ve never seen before! My heart for this campus is to see this community become fully alive in Christ.
Jesus will ask us to surrender our whole lives, but He will take what was once dead and offer us new, transformed identities in Him. Please don’t hold on to the brokenness of your old life when there is immeasurable joy waiting for you in the new. I encourage you to grow in intimacy with God daily through prayer and reading the Bible. It is through constant pursuit of Him and listening to Him speak that we can be revived!
This is not a journey we have to take alone. Will you journey with me? Let us join together as the body of Christ, and seek to find our fulfillment in His love. TWU offers an abundance of opportunities and provides phenomenal community. I encourage you to find people with a similar desire for God.
Let us do more than just read about Jesus’ abundant life. Let us plug into it, let it flow through us, and watch as it impacts our community. Let us lay aside our heavy burdens and the weight of our sin and shame, and run recklessly into Jesus’ arms. Let us seek revival together.
If you want to take the next step towards revival but do not know how, I invite you to join me and other hungry hearts for nights of worship, honest conversation, and prayer, as we journey together throughout the year. (If you’re wanting to talk more about this, send me an email)