1) Get thoroughly dissatisfied with yourself. Complacency is the deadly enemy of spiritual progress. The contented soul is a
stagnant soul.

2) Set your face like a flint toward a sweeping transformation of your life.  Timid experiments are tagged for failure before they start. We must throw our whole soul into our desire for God.

3) Put yourself in the way of blessing. It’s a mistake to expect God’s help to come as a windfall apart from conditions known and met.  To desire revival, and at the same time to neglect prayer and devotion, is to wish one way and walk another.

4) Do a thorough job of repenting. Hasty repentance means a shallow spiritual experience. Let godly sorrow do her healing work. It is our wretched habit of toleration of sin that keeps us in our half-dead condition.

5) Make restitution wherever possible. If you owe a debt pay it. If you have quarrelled with anyone, go as far as you can to achieve reconciliation. As fully as possible, make the crooked straight.

6) Bring your life into accord with the Sermon on the Mount and other such New Testament Scriptures as are designed to instruct in the way of righteousness. An honest man with an open Bible and a pad and pencil is sure to find out what’s wrong with him quickly.

7) Be serious minded. The people of the world used to go to the movies to escape serious thinking about God and religion. There must be a radical change in  your habits, or there will not be any permanent improvement in your interior life.

8) Deliberately narrow your interests. Too many projects use up time and energy without bringing us nearer to God.  The mansions of the heart will become larger when the doors are thrown open to Christ and closed against the world and sin.

9) Begin to witness. Find something to do for God, and your fellowman. Make yourself available. Do anything you are asked to do.

Learn to obey.

10) Have faith in God. Begin to expect. Look up toward the throne. All heaven is on your side. God will not disappoint you.

These suggestions constitute a formula for personal revival. When personal revival is experienced, there is no knowing how far it may spread. The Church is in desperate need of a spiritual resurrection and it can only come through the revived individual.

I have been praying through this formula occasionally; the only way such formulas work is if you take them seriously and give them time.  I love the way that at the start the resolves are deep and affecting the will, and as you move towards the end the instructions become very simple, easy, and short.  If our heart is prepared and willing, obedience is not difficult.  It is getting self out of the way that takes the time.  Allow the Holy Spirit to fill you, to increase, ask for some of Him, ask for more of Him, ask for all of Him and none of you.  As John Piper tells us, we should “invest in the blue-chip, high yield, divinely insured securities of heaven.  A life devoted to material comforts and thrills is like throwing money down a rathole.  But a life invested in the labour of love yields dividends of joy unsurpassed and unending.”  Next time I’m planning to put some notes and ideas from my sermon on Sunday down here.

Advertisements