As believers, we must all completely surrender to the cross. (Lightstock )
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Spiritual revival is sorely needed in our churches today. I am often asked how we experience such a revival.
My answer continues to be that until we make a decision to deal honestly with God's questions about full allegiance to Him, there will be little or no prospect of a revival in our hearts, no stirring of the Spirit in our churches, and no awakening in our land.
True revival is nothing less or more than the manifest presence of God in our lives. It is when Jesus is free to be who He wants to be in, through, and around us. A surrendered pastor and a surrendered church will experience spiritual revival.
What Opens the Heart Fully to God
One of the greatest keys to get us to this point is prayer and fasting. It opens the heart to God fully. Revival comes when we give ourselves to God completely. Revival is the manifest presence of God in our lives. Until the church of Jesus Christ regains its spiritual power, recaptures its spiritual passion, is willing to pay the price, and begins to demonstrate an unfailing love for Jesus Christ, it will remain lukewarm, out of touch, ineffective, purposeless, nonproductive, ingrown, and something so tepid that the only sensible thing to do is to spit it out.
Personal Surrender and Transferring All Ownership
A spiritual breakthrough begins with personally surrendering oneself fully to God, transferring all ownership to the one true owner, Jesus Christ. We do not need to grab but release. We do not live with our hands in fists, but with our hands open. We will never choose to let God have His way with us if we continue to hang on to our own desires, our own dreams, and our own bondage.
Abandoning All to Receive All
In wartime, if our enemy captures us, we are commanded to surrender. At that moment we have a choice. We can take our chances, make a run for it, and hope for the best. But if an armed enemy pursues us, we have little chance of physical survival. When God asks us to surrender to Him, the analogy is the same except for one key point: God is not the enemy. He is our Father and our Friend. He knows what's best for us. We need to surrender our lives to God in the same way a child holds up his arms surrendering to his parents.
Surrendering to God is abandoning all that we have to receive all that God possesses. Personally, I do not know of a better way to experience this fully surrendered life than through the gateway of prayer and fasting. When we surrender, we transfer all ownership to the one true owner, Jesus Christ. We exchange our lives for His life! And when we enter God's gateway to supernatural power for living, we begin to learn what an exchanged life is all about. We begin to hear God speak to us in a voice we've never heard before. It's not a harsh voice, but rather the voice of a waiting Father who will always tell us the truth.
Only God Can Remove Our Blind Spots
Whenever God calls me to fast, when I deny myself the natural act of eating to focus on specific spiritual goals, I ask God to show me those areas in my life that I'm still keeping for Ronnie Floyd, asking, "God, what am I still not surrendering fully to you? Show me. I cannot see the blind spots in my life without your divine counsel."
The more we live in God's holy presence, staying focused on Him through the joys of the disciplines of fasting and prayer, the more we will learn of who Jesus really is; and that's what we must desire more than life itself. What in your life is keeping you from fully surrendering to God?
Pastor, surrender your life and ministry to God completely. Church, surrender all you are and have to God fully. Whatever it is Pastor, and whatever it is Church, surrender it to God fully. Right now. Not later. Today.
Dr. Ronnie Floyd has been a pastor for over 37 years. Since 1986, Pastor Floyd has served as the Senior Pastor of Cross Church, Northwest Arkansas, which has baptized over 17,000 people during his tenure. Cross Church was one of the first churches in America to go multi-site. In June 2014, Pastor Floyd was elected President of the Southern Baptist Convention. He has authored over 20 books including FORWARD: 7 Distinguishing Marks For Future Leaders, releasing in 2015.