Taking Stock of the American Church
I am concerned that much of the Church of America has lost its passion. Over the last 10 to 15 years, I think people have grown weary. Some leaders have not seen their prayers come to pass, so they have resorted to activities instead of intercession. Maybe we turned our churches into seeker-sensitive congregations, trying to appeal to the harvest we know is out there. We have tried to get our services to look more like the world, thinking that would be attractive. We have upgraded lighting and sound systems and staging backdrops.
I am not saying all of this is bad in and of itself. But I am saying that there seems to have been a turning away from going after God with passion. There’s been an abandonment of believing that the Holy Spirit’s anointing is enough. We started thinking, “If we can be good enough, relevant enough, flashy enough, or entertaining enough, we can get the lost in our doors.” I think that over time it brought us a lack of fire and a loss of sensitivity to the Lord.
As a result of all this, the message of the Gospel has been watered down. We now have a large group of Believers in America with no passion whatsoever. We have become more religious. We would never believe that. We think that acting like the world shows we are not religious. The Bible says otherwise. Tell me how it is any different for an individual to go through the rituals of a traditional denominational church and an evangelical one that won’t allow the Holy Spirit freedom? Both have services where the people sing two or three feel-good songs, have a short message, and go home. Trade out the organ and choir for a modern praise band and you have the same effect. Where is the passionate intercession, the altar call, and the abandoned outpouring of love on the Lord in worship. There is no movement of the Holy Spirit on the congregation to draw hearts to repentance. There is no fiery preaching that convicts and changes the hearts of people.
The result of this is a very shallow walk with God. Congregants largely don’t know the scriptures. They have little discernment. They live like they want to most of the time with little thought of what it really means to live a sacrificial life for Christ. However, I don’t believe all is lost. God can deal with all of this. That’s a part of what a Great Awakening is all about. Most of those I have been talking about are sincere Believers. They just don’t know any better. They haven’t been properly led or taught. When they get a taste of what God is about to do, they’re going to want it! They are going to want it for themselves, and they are going to want it for their children. They won’t want to go back. They are going to want to live for Christ, and they are going to want others to know the Good News, as well.
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:12; ESV)
Give Him 15 minutes in prayer:
Repent if you have lost your passion for Jesus. Ask Him to restore the love you felt for Him when you were first saved.
Repent if you are a leader that decided somewhere along the way to appeal to man instead of fearing God.
Read some of the Book of Mark or the Book of Acts. Let the Lord reignite a fire in you.
Intercede for the Body of Christ to receive a new and fresh move of the Holy Spirit. This time it is coming as Awakening—with fire and harvest in the midst of it.
A prayer you can pray:
[Pour your heart out to Jesus. Repent if you need to. Worship Him if you want to. I cannot give you the words for this. They must come from your own heart.]
Father, I want more of Jesus. I want to be a light in the darkness. I want to be free of religious trappings. I want to know You and make You known! Revive me and restore the love I had for You at the beginning. Holy Spirit, send Your fire into my heart. Let me be the fragrance of the knowledge of You in every place. I want to trust You to lead, guide, and direct me. Break complacency off of me. I want to show You to the world around me. We all need Jesus! Change me, fire up the Church, and sweep across our nation! In Jesus’ name, I cry out for Awakening in America! Amen.
Christ will transform our hearts and the American Church will be passionate for Him again!