“Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.” John 12:24
Survival: “The state or fact of continuing to live or exist, typically in spite of an accident, ordeal, or difficult circumstances.”
Revive: “Restore to life or consciousness…regain life, consciousness, or strength.”
For the majority of my life I would selfishly do whatever I could to survive in this world. This ranged from getting a higher education, making a six-figure salary and people pleasing. Whenever I encountered an adversity in my life I would ‘pull myself up from my bootstraps’ and press on to survival. It’s different for me now.
The closer I walk with Jesus Christ, the more is revealed about what is the hope of His calling, and the riches of His inheritance. I have learned my inheritance is not of this world. I am learning to set my mind on heavenly things and to release the white knuckle grip I’ve had on trying to survive in this world. I am no longer comfortable with survival because I want revival!
In order to revive something it must be DEAD first! That’s probably what my Lord Jesus Christ meant when He said:
“…If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me.” Luke 9:23
The NLT Bible translates ‘deny himself’ to ‘turn from your selfish ways’. This is great news: with a daily death comes daily revival by the power of God’s Holy Spirit.
I am learning the more I surrender my will, which includes my plans, purposes, reputation and schedule, the more God can work in and through me for His purposes. I’m learning to turn from my selfish survival mode to God’s Spirit revival mode:
|Survival says:||Revival says|
|*I want to keep my life for myself||*I lose my life for the sake of Christ|
|*I must save myself||*I entrust my life to God|
|*I don’t want to get hurt||*I will share in the sufferings of Christ|
|*I want others to like me||*I will share in the persecutions of Christ|
|*I can’t lose||*I will gain Christ|
|*Promote yourself||*I will deny myself|
|*Hold a tight grip on material possessions||*I will give generously and sacrificially|
|*Clench your fists||*I will surrender with open palms|
|*Cling to the world||*I will cling to the Word of God (Jesus Christ)|
|*Stay on the ledge of legalism||*I will float in the depths of God’s grace|
|*It’s OK to have a callous heart||*Pierce and soften my heart God|
|*It’s about me||*It’s about God’s kingdom|
|*Seek money and things of this world||*Seek God’s kingdom and righteousness|
|*Be a slave to the law||*Live in freedom in Christ|
|*Live safe||*Live adventurously yielded to the Holy Spirit|
|*I must trust in manipulation||* I will wait on the inspiration of the Holy Spirit|
I don’t want to survive, I want to revive!
But let me be purely transparent with you…it’s not as easy as I say it. My flesh cries out, “survive…it’s about what you want…” This ‘battle’ begins every morning.
Each morning I have the opportunity to be revived when my alarm goes off. I have a choice: wake up, humble and die to myself and meet with my Father through my Lord Jesus Christ fixing my eyes on Him, to receive His anointing for His kingdom assignment He has prepared for me, or quench the Holy Spirit and sleep in because my ‘flesh’ desires it. It’s my ‘free will’ choice.
By God’s grace, I’m learning to kindle afresh the fire within me and reap the rewards of crucifying my flesh while yielding to the power of the Holy Spirit, thus experiencing His life abundant! It is as Jesus Christ has said,
“For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.” Matthew 16:25
Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the LIFE no one can come to the Father but through Him!
Authentic revival comes after our death and God’s breath in us. Only then will we bear authentic kingdom fruit, for the Spirit must come BEFORE the fruit!
May we the Church take up the cross daily and follow Jesus Christ not struggling to survive but surrendering and humbling ourselves waiting for God to revive us!
“And it shall be said, “Build up, build up, prepare the way, remove every obstacle out of the way of My people.” For thus says the high and exalted One Who lives forever, whose name is Holy, “I dwell on a high and holy place, and also with the contrite and lowly of spirit in order to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite.” Isaiah 57:14-15