Reflections on Revival, Worshipping God, and Prayer
“But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.” James 3:17 NKJV
A few days into the outpouring at Asbury University, we had heard reports from some of our board members and friends from other ministries that there was a special move of God happening in Hughes Auditorium. We knew that the Collegiate Day of Prayer had been scheduled in the same building for February 23rd to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Collegiate Day of Prayer, and to cry out to God for a new outpouring of the Spirit on every college and university campus in America. And so, as we began to pray, God gave a great urgency to us about going to observe for ourselves what the Lord was doing NOW.
I flew in late on Wednesday the 15th, made my way to the campus, and walked into Hughes Auditorium at 12:40 a.m. The building was mostly full, many of them students, but those of all ages were there, and everyone was worshipping God in song and in prayer. I tarried there, enjoying the presence of God’s peace.
When I returned the next morning at around 9 a.m., it was raining and there was a line stretching almost around the block. Hundreds with umbrellas, grouping together, waiting. A lot of pastors, old and young, from many denominations and many states, curious and drawn by what they had read and seen on social media – testifying that the Lord compelled them to come. No impatience. No complaining. Only kindness. Most, simply yearning for a touch from Jesus.
In the auditorium, praise and prayer went on hour after hour, people coming in and out, many for 7 to 10 hours at a time. The time that I spent there was pure, peaceful, powerful, and palpable. They were streaming the service outside for all of those couldn’t get in, and you could hear worship echoing off of the buildings because of the way the campus sits on the land. It was powerful. People were so hungry, so thirsty, and so desiring a fresh connection with the Lord.
Friday and Saturday were only different in that thousands more came as word spread. Lines stretched around the campus and the lawn in front of the buildings was full. I met people from almost every state, several from Canada, and even from as far away as Brazil. Even with the tens of thousands of people there, the atmosphere was one of peace, and the love and joy of the Holy Spirit was very, very evident.
Whether we call these special visits from God outpourings, revivals, or awakenings, one thing is clear: they are special visits from the Lord. One thing I’ve learned through the years is that whether I’m in a crowd of thousands or alone in worship and prayer, fresh touches from the Lord are always welcome. As you spend time with God in the coming days and weeks, seek His presence for you personally. Spend time in worship and prayer, expecting, and He will show up – for you.
Let’s pray … Lord, as we pour out our praise and prayers to You, pour out Your presence and peace in the same way that you did at Asbury. Pure and palpable, full of mercy. Touch us in a very special way. Restore our souls. In Jesus Name, Amen.
Rejoicing in Hope,