I can see clearly now
2020, the year of sight and clarity. What a year it has been! As I am typing this my heart wells with emotion reflecting on the many trials we have endured as a church family this year. None of us would have written the events we walked through this year into our life stories if we were the ones writing. None the less, God allowed all of it, and because He did, we know He will use it for His purposes. I personally am refusing to withdraw and go back to what I use to call normal. After the vision repair the Lord guided me through this year, I can see that what I called normal Jesus did not call good. He has a much better and much more exciting plan for each of us.
As we begin to countdown the end of the now infamous year of 2020. I for one will not cry mercy and check out into American holiday comatose. I plan to repent for my complacent lifestyle, set my face like a flint and begin preparing my heart for the breakthrough and victories the Lord has promised in 2021. Can I predict what is going to happen in 2021? 2020 proved that is not possible. Predictions are not what Christians are called to do anyhow.
I am declaring, and I am preparing. I am declaring that God is going to release an awakening in our nation like nothing we have ever seen- regardless of who is president, or who wins the Super Bowl. God is ushering in revival in Appalachia that we have been contending for. So, saddle up, strap on your boots and get ready for the ride. I feel an urgency from the Lord to begin pastoring and teaching through three areas that God wants to touch in a greater way in the life of our church in 2021. I believe that as we step into revival, we must be vigilant. I want to briefly share these three points with you now with the intention of preaching on each point over the next three weeks or so. This is where I believe Jesus is leading and blessing First Church.
Local and Missional Life Groups multiplying.
Real, authentic and Holy Spirit filled house church. I will probably never stop saying this. We are not a Church with life group ministry. We are life groups that assemble for Church. Life Group is our version of house churches. Paul writes letters to at least 5 different house churches in the new testament not including the ones he mentions in Acts. They are biblical and vital to the health of the global church. The Lord has made it abundantly clear this is our growth model.
7I will bring them to My holy mountain
and make them joyful in My house of prayer.
Their burnt offerings and sacrifices
will be accepted on My altar,
for My house will be called a house of prayer
Prayer and worship have always been a key to releasing the Kingdom of Heaven to earth. It has always been a key component to the life of First Church, but the Lord is calling us to much more. Our newly opened prayer room is proof of His leading. I feel the Lord leading us to press into prayer and fasting as a body in a deeper more effective way.
7Go and announce to them that the Kingdom of Heaven is near. 8Heal the sick, raise the dead, cure those with leprosy, and cast out demons. Give as freely as you have received!
We have seen this happen as we have gone out house to house in 2020. I also believe that because we have been obedient in this area, Jesus is going to pour out more and more. When we simply go and do as He does, Jesus will demonstrate His love through miracles in ways we never imagined.
Are you ready? Probably not. Truthfully neither am I, but I trust Jesus. Let’s all take a deep breath, shake off the sting of last year and fix our eyes on Jesus as we jump into 2021.