“I’m so excited! I found them. I didn’t even realize they were lost, but I’ve found them,” I exclaimed as I pulled the old tarnished silver earrings out of the box! “Now, where is my silver polishing cloth,” I wondered? I found the cloth and began diligently rubbing the dull earrings with it.
After a short time the shiny bright silver came back to life. It began to shine and sparkle as if it were brand new. I couldn’t wait to put them back into use, so I quickly put them on so I could show my loved ones the—once favorite—earrings that had been lost.
As I was thinking about how to begin this blog, I remembered my lost earrings, and it became obvious to me what the Holy Spirit was leading me to say. I’ve been tucked away in Georgia at my secret little paradise for a week now. I came here to work on my fourth book. But, after struggling the whole first day just to write an Introduction, I finally relented and closed my laptop.
Sometimes we lose things, or put things away—out of sight. We may not even realize we’ve misplaced it until we happen upon it again at an unexpected time. God knew exactly what I needed this week, even though I didn’t recognize it at first. What I needed was personal revival. There were some things that I had “misplaced” and needed to find again.
As I began to spend time in prayer and worship, the Holy Spirit began to polish off the tarnish, and expose the missing treasures. Yes, ministers can get tired, dusty and covered with tarnish too. I started to realize that so often I ask God questions, but rarely stick around to hear His answer. So, I dedicated myself to listening this week.
I wrote down specific questions I wanted answers to. And, I praised and worshipped Him. I put my whole focus on Him. I prayed, I asked Holy Spirit to become my Teacher afresh and anew! I repented of complacency, and I vowed to listen more carefully as I read His Holy Word. And, do you know every single one of my questions were answered?
I also spent time reflecting on other things that had been misplaced in my life that needed to be renewed. He showed me that my joy was waning. Much of my joy comes from leading people to Jesus. Since the jails, and churches have been closed due to Covid, I have desperately missed being used by the Holy Spirit to lead people to Jesus, and help them receive the wonderful gift of the baptism in the Holy Spirit.
My joy has been tested in these trying times, as I’m sure many of you have felt as well. So, I asked the Holy Spirit to renew the fire and fervor of ministering to others. I used to be far more sensitive to His nudge to pray for people—wherever that might be. As, I have spent time praying in tongues, and asking Him to refill and renew me, He has certainly done that!
Last night I had to make a quick run to a little store not far from the cabin. I really didn’t want to go out, but I had an overwhelming urgency to go. While there He led me to two different people—complete strangers— to minister to, and pray with. Both of them with tear filled eyes thanked me repeatedly, and told me that was exactly what they needed. I was rejoicing on my way back to the cabin. What a wonderful blessing to be used to pour into the lives of others.
On my drive back to the cabin the Holy Spirit began to reveal even more to me than I had first realized. To be completely honest, I have been worried about what this next season of ministry would look like. But God revealed to me last night, that come what may, the harvest fields are ripe! People are desperate for love. We can offer our love, and that is a temporary fix, but when they discover the precious love of Jesus lives are forever changed.
I’ve been encouraged to speak the truth even more boldly than before because the time is short. We don’t have time to tip toe around the truth when lives are at stake. He’s also encouraged me to pay more attention to those around me. We always have open doors to minister. We will always have a platform to display God’s greatness, and His abundant love if we just pay attention.
And, last but not least, we must be doers of The Word. This is not time to hide and cower in defeat. We must stand up and fight for the souls of the lost like never before. We have to be obedient to His voice, and that often means we have to shut out the voices of this evil world so we can hear the underlying cries of desperation. These are just a few of the things He has spoken to me in my personal revival.
I feel encouraged, strengthened, refreshed, renewed and excited about what God is going to do next! I feel like a pair of shiny new silver earrings. Maybe you need to have your own personal revival. You certainly don’t have to run to a cabin in the woods to do it. Just set aside some time to listen. If you have questions, ask Him. But remember to listen. Listen as you pray, listen as you read The Word, and listen as you simply sit in the silence and meditate on His goodness. You will probably find some things you’ve misplaced!
The high and lofty one who lives in eternity,
the Holy One, says this:
“I live in the high and holy place
with those whose spirits are contrite and humble.
I restore the crushed spirit of the humble
and revive the courage of those with repentant hearts.
Isaiah 57:15 NLT
The Humbling of Christian America (Warning, I stepped all over my own toes here too, so don’t get mad at me).
You may be asking yourself, what is going on? Perhaps you thought when you went to the polls and cast your vote for a President who upholds our Christian values and stands against the slaughter of innocent babies, everything was going to be okay. Life would go on as normal, maybe Roe Vs. Wade would even be overturned?
I’m not ashamed to say I voted for President Trump because he supports our Christian values. And now, as the whole election seems to be falling into the hands of the opposite party I myself, had to ask, “God, what is going on?”
And, I heard the same thing I have been hearing for months. “It is time for the complacent church to WAKE UP!” For too long American Christians have had it easy. We could afford to grow complacent. As long as the government was attempting to uphold our Christian values, we could cast our vote for the “good guy,” and go on with our lives feeling as if we had done our part.
We have tried to depend on the guy in the White House to hold back sin in America, while we hang out in our comfort zones lifting the occasional prayer for our nation. It has been fairly easy for us. Outside of the random social media taunts and mockery, we haven’t faced a lot of persecution here in “Christian America.”
We have prayed for the persecuted missionaries and martyrs who have died for sharing the Gospel in other countries, but we have sat on our comfy couches and let sin take over here in America because it’s someone else’s job. We have become more obsessed with how many people we can get into our church pews, than how many souls we are getting into heaven.
We have stopped speaking Truth for fear of offending people and causing them to leave the church. But what good is it to have a church full of lost people on their way to hell? And we wonder why “the church” is powerless? Really?
We have banned the power of the Holy Spirit from most of our services, and wonder why everyone seems to be asleep. We can’t understand why attendance has dropped in our churches, but we have failed to see that our “cheap entertainment,” can’t compete with the worlds elaborate forms of entertainment. It’s because God’s house was never meant to be a form of entertainment.
Blame it on corruption, and deception from the opposite party (I’m not saying they are not involved) but who has allowed sin and deception to gain such a solid foothold in our Nation? We had one job—win the lost to Christ.
We have been busy building our own platforms as we have promoted a weak and powerless prosperity gospel. When did Jesus ever say, “Lift me up so you can have a fifteen million dollar mansion?” No, He said He was going to prepare a place for us, and in His Fathers’ house were many mansions. Will any of us ever see those mansions? Are we so shallow, and so lost that we have totally ignored the truth of a real heaven, but also a real hell?
I realize Satan is running rampant in our world because he knows his time is short. But, as he has upped his game, we have all but left the court! We have got to wake up.
Many people who know me well, remember what I said in 2016, “If Trump wins the election, it will be because God has pressed the pause button to allow Christians to step up and fight for a harvest of souls in the nation. I don’t think he will win a second term, because I believe God is giving us one last chance.”
Did we blow it? Has God decided to allow America to have the sin it has so desperately desired and accepted? Has He grown sick of our complacency? Has our stagnation become a putrid odor in His nostrils?
Perhaps this is our humbling. We have tried to do so many things in our own power without His help, and maybe He is showing us just how much favor we have had and have ignored.
From this point on things are going to be harder. Even if something happens to swing the election in President Trump’s favor. If, we are given another opportunity with 4 more years, what will we do with it? Will we just waste it?
We must develop a spiritual backbone. We have to speak truth in love, and we must do everything we can to reach the lost before our time is up. I believe Jesus is coming soon, but will He find faith (a spotless church) on the earth when He returns?
We must lift Him up. He alone is our Savior.
I want to see Jesus lifted high. He said if He was lifted up, He would draw all men unto Him. Who are we trying to draw people to? We are not the world’s Savior, nor is any man or woman on this planet. We must humble ourselves, and lift up the mighty Name of Jesus!
We must welcome the Holy Spirit back into our churches. Let Him convict and woo the sinner to come to Jesus. We must be truth speakers led by the Holy Spirit, not seeking our own popularity, but seeking to do God’s will. When we refuse to speak against sin, we are quenching the Holy Spirit’s power to convict people of their sin. Sin is conquered one soul at a time.
We must get back to holiness. Jesus said to “Be holy as I am holy.” We are chosen, set apart, called for a purpose, and equipped to be mighty warriors in a supernatural battle that cannot be observed by the human eye, but CAN be won by saints on their knees in prayer.
We must resist complacency, and stagnation. We have got to get out of our comfort zones. We will never see a supernatural move of God as long as we are sitting on our sofa’s watching programs that glamorize the supernatural powers of Satan. Greater is He that is within US than He that is in the world, but if we keep pouring the world in, we will push the GREATER out causing us to become weak.
We need Jesus. We need to be filled with the Holy Spirit, and we need to honor God with all that is within us. We have lost the fear of the Lord, and we must get back to a place of reverential fear for His holiness, and His justice. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
I love you all. These words were hard for me too. I am as guilty as anyone. But, I believe we are seeing what we are experiencing in this nation right now, because God is trying to wake us. Let us heed His warnings. Let us hunger and thirst for His Word like never before.
Amos 8:11 NIV
“The days are coming,” declares the Sovereign LORD, “when I will send a famine through the land— not a famine of food or a thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the LORD.”
Donna Sparks is an International Speaker and Evangelist. She is the Author of Beauty From Ashes: My Story of Grace, and, No Limits: Embracing the Miraculous.