“Now the Lord saw, and it was displeasing in His sight that there was no justice! He saw that there was no man, and was astonished that there was no one to intercede…” Isaiah 59:16a
The great old founder of Methodism, John Wesley said it well, “Prayer is the fuel that runs the engine that drives revival.” In this day where there seems to be an abundance of those who point out the need for revival, there is a glaring absence of those who are willing to pay the price to pray down revival!
Last year (February, 2021) we looked at the prophet Isaiah’s prayer for revival in chapter 64. Today, I want to take a closer look at that passage, especially at the urgent tone the words suggest.
“Behold, You were angry, for we sinned. We continued in them for a long time…All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a filthy garment, and all of us wither like a leaf, and our iniquities like the wind take us away… There is no one who arouses himself to take hold of You! Isaiah 64:5b-7a
Years ago, a wise person advised me from time to time to close the door to my office and pray the prayer of the Psalmist in 139:23,24. Then ask the Lord to search ME and know MY heart; Try ME and know MY thoughts; and see if there be any wicked (grievous) way in ME, and lead ME in the way everlasting! I have become increasingly more convinced that the one Christlike quality that is most lacking in those of us who profess today to be Christians is brokenness!
Listen to Isaiah again concerning the Lord, “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.” 57:15b
Oh, that God in His mercy would once again restore the spirit of brokenness among His people. That each of us would cease blaming other things, or other people for our un-Christlike behavior. That we would follow the example of Isaiah and go to the Lord (Who is the ONLY ONE who can truly restore and revive)!
“But NOW, O Lord, You are our Father. We are the clay and You are our potter; and all of us are the work of your hand. Do not be angry beyond measure, O Lord, nor remember iniquity forever; Behold, look now, all of us are Your people!” 64:8,9
Is it possible that these are the missing ingredients today in our discussions about the desperate need for the reviving touch of God. Is it a matter of our failure to humble ourselves before the Lord and ask for His mercy and grace? Let’s join together in brokenness and begging the Lord in prayer and see for ourselves!