Good morning one and all, and WELCOME to McHenry First Baptist today! I am excited that you are here with us, to bring praise and worship to the Lord Jesus Christ! He is truly worthy of all praise, isn’t He!? He has done so much for me and my family, and I know He has for you as well. So let us all simply give Him thanks today. Let’s just praise Him, for being our God. A loving, merciful, God that cares about each and every one of us, no matter what! As we begin our revival services, I’m even more excited that you are here! We have been praying, asking the Lord to send a great revival, not to the church per se, but to our own hearts! Revival is an exciting time for a church, but we must not lose focus on what it truly is, and a lot of people today really do not know what revival is. Let me share a bit about what revival is not if I may. Revival is not simply a time to invite our friends and neighbors, or new folks in the community, to come to church. We should already be doing that anyway! It is not a time centered solely on saving lost souls, nor increasing church membership or attendance. It’s not a time focused on getting things done around the church, or starting some new ministry at the church. And, for those that aren’t really sure, revival is not the only time we have dinner on the grounds, and refreshments after services! No, revival is really none of those, rather all of those things, and a whole lot more, will be a result of revival! Picture this if you will, since it’s cold outside. Maybe you have a fireplace, wood heater, or even one of those fancy chiminea things, and you build yourself a nice, warm fire in there. It is so nice and cozy, and you get all comfortable close to it, and bask in it’s warmth! You get so relaxed in fact, that you fall asleep, and take a nice, extended nap! Some time later, you wake up and something isn’t quite right. Instead of being warm and cozy like you were, you find yourself cold and shivering again, because your nice, warm, cozy fire, went out while you were sleeping! You were not tending to it, didn’t add any more wood to it, and it went out, leaving only some ahses and coals, and partially burned pieces of wood there. A cold remnant of a once warm fire is now all that remains. This is a crude picture of what happens to the “fire” that burns within us for the Lord, when we don’t keep it tended as we should. We find ourselves not praying as much, or at all sadly. We’re not reading and studying God’s Word, not coming to Sunday School or church, especially on Sunday or Wednesday evenings! And before you know it, just like that warm, cozy fire we were thinking about, our fire for the Lord is reduced to nothing more than a remnant of what once was. Folks, REVIVAL is a time to “stoke that fire” if you will! To refocus ourselves on God, and to communicate with Him through prayer, reading and studying His word. Revival...is a time to put God back where He belongs, to the top spot in your life! So, let us focus not on our neighbors, our spouses, children, or anyone else. Let’s focus on our own hearts, and stoke the fires, fan them into a roaring fire of REVIVAL, and everything else will happen as a result! God bless you all, and pray for HIS WILL to be the standard here!
We had to cancel 2 of the 4 services we had scheduled due to the icy conditions. But just as we should never give up in our efforts to share the good news with the world, we will reschedule, and have Bro. Wayne back with us in the near future. May the Lord bless you all the more today!