II Chronicles 7:14 “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”
Isaiah 6:8 “Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.”
I Peter 4:17 “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?”
II Kings 22:19 “Because thine heart was tender, and thou hast humbled thyself before the LORD, when thou heardest what I spake against this place, and against the inhabitants thereof, that they should become a desolation and a curse, and hast rent thy clothes, and wept before me; I also have heard thee, saith the LORD.”
This story from “The Innovator’s Way” has a powerful spiritual application:
“It is the year 1720. You, a traveler, arrive in the Italian town of Cremona in search of the best violins made. You look on the street of the violin shops. At the mouth of the street, immediately to the left, you see the shop of the Guarneri family. In its window is a very large sign with majestic calligraphy: ‘Best Violins in All of Italy.’ Farther down on the right you see the shop belonging to the Gagliano family. In its window is an even grander sign: ‘Best Violins in the Whole World.’ Down at the far end of the street, tucked in the shady cul-de-sac, you find a small shop belonging to the Stradivarius family. In its window there is a small card. You have to lean over and squint to read the handwritten message: ‘Best Violins on This Street.’”
The author goes on to provide his own application from this story: “The lesson is that being excellent on a global scale begins with being excellent in the neighborhood. That excellence begins with yourself.”
This is true of temporal excellence, it is true of spiritual excellence, and it is true of revival!
We quickly lament the global problems of our day. We yearn for worldwide and nationwide revival. We seek a return of America back to its Christ-centered foundation. We are grieved by institutional and corporate sin. But yet, we quickly forget that such change begins on our own street and in our own neighborhood. It starts in our own Christian community, in our own church, in our own family, and in our own lives. It begins with us!
PLEASE PRAY FOR AMERICAN CHRISTIANS TO SEEK PERSONAL REVIVAL AS A NECESSARY PRECURSOR TO NATIONWIDE REVIVAL. Excellence and revival begins with myself and yourself.