Isaiah 57:15 (NLT)
The high and lofty one who lives in eternity, the Holy One, says this: “I live in the high and holy place with those whose spirits are contrite and humble. I restore the crushed spirit of the humble and revive the courage of those with repentant hearts.”
Early in the morning trying to be as quiet as possible I crawl out of bed getting ready to start the day within minutes our dog is right at my feet knowing it is time for his first meal of the day. With great enthusiasm, he runs back and forth from me to his food bowl with great anticipation. I thought I heard a yip but surely it was not him. He hasn’t done that in years. But as I come around the corner into the kitchen, I realize it is him. I wonder what happened to the old man. Oh I know exactly what happened to him! Her name is Izzy Azalea. Our newest edition an energetic and vivacious little three and one-half pound of pure energy.
We weren’t even looking when introduced to Miss Izzy. Our oldest daughter recently married has been begging and pleading with her husband for a fur baby. He has been in strong opposition. So she sent me Izzy’s picture to muster our support which I showed to my unsuspecting husband who said, “If you want her, get her.” Within a few hours, Izzy Azalea came to live with us. She needed a family and we just happened to have one. But to be completely honest, we had a bit of an ulterior motive. See our dog, Chico who is about to turn eleven is advancing in his years. Not the spry little guy he once was, his fur is almost completely white and a hint of cataracts can be seen in his big brown eyes. Our youngest daughter is extremely attached to him. So we have been talking about adding to the pack to ease the loss that will one day come. However, the day that we anticipated seems to be fading away with the new puppy’s arrival. Chico is revived. He is more active. He is showing signs of revival that make our heart glad.
I restore the crushed spirit and revive the courage of those with repentant hearts. Who couldn’t use a shot of energy and enthusiasm in the midst of the ordinary? Who doesn’t want to be revived each day? God knows that His People need new mercy each day and provides it. He knows that His Grace must be sufficient for all our insufficiencies. His Unfailing Love and Goodness is pursuing us because the Lord knows what each day will demand of us. It is okay to come to just feeling crushed, afraid and broken. I believe that the Lord wants to revive me again just like he has our old dog with the arrival of his newfound companion, Izzy.
2 Corinthians 4:16-17 (NLT)
That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!
It is God’s Will for our spirits to be renewed every day. Even in the midst of opposition, present troubles and overwhelming circumstances, the Lord is diligent in His Response to us as His Spirit works to generate those things in us that revive us such as joy and peace. This is why we must never give up. Our bodies are born dying. Once we are saved, our inner man (the flesh guy) begins to die as well. It is our spirit that experiences new life. The unseen part of us connected with the Lord preparing for forever. How can we experience revival in us day by day when so much of us is dying in His Midst?
John 4:23-24 (NLT)
But the time is coming—indeed it’s here now—when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship him that way. For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.”
I like to meet up with the woman at the well when I need to be reminded of that which revives and refreshes me day by day. She was at the well at an unusual time because of her choices in life. Now though she felt isolated and alone, it was by divine appointment as Jesus wanted an encounter with the woman. She would never be the same again. The Lord wants an encounter with you. He has ordered your steps to arrive at the place. He has positioned you in time to arrive at just the right moment. He has allowed your heart to be broken so that now it can be renewed. You thirst and hunger for something more because you have worn out your reserve. Considering giving up is the very place that His Glory meets us and overtakes our life. We are out of the way.
We are to worship the Lord in spirit and in truth. What does that mean? Worshipping the Lord is not what we have made it. It is not on a weekly schedule but a daily means of survival. A production with music, lights and cameras is not necessary. God is after only you. Worship is the act of one heart in a single person dying to make a connection with God. It is in that moment that our heart breaks as our spirit dies and we abandon all pride and self-sufficiency to say, “I give it all to you! I surrender! I want you Lord more than this life or anything in it.” That is worship and when we choose to do so by entertaining His Spirit and ingesting His Word something changes and we are renewed moment by moment and day by day.
Ephesians 4:23-24 (NLT)
Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.
You have a choice in who and what influences your life. Public opinion may be popular but it is not always true. In fact, most of the time it is completely contrary to the mindset of God. We have been given the mind of Christ. (I Corinthians 2:16) His Spirit lives inside of us who is greater than he that is in this world. The Holy Spirit will renew our thoughts and attitudes which will directly impact our actions. His Spirit is essential to putting on our new nature and living a righteous and holy life. Which is not a boring existence? It is a promise to be renewed, revived and restored day by day. The Spirit of God sets us free from sin to live in the prosperity and favor of God known as His Glory. The Holy Spirit produces in us those things which cannot be made by our human nature. The Fruit of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, kindness, patience, gentleness and self-control. (Galatians 5:22-23) It is this that we grow, mature and prosper both inside and out. We must stir up the Holy Spirit. Acknowledge Him. Talk to Him. Allow Him to assist us in our walk with Christ. That is what He is there for.
Psalm 119:47-50 (NLT)
How I delight in your commands! How I love them! I honor and love your commands. I meditate on your decrees. Remember your promise to me; it is my only hope. Your promise revives me; it comforts me in all my troubles.
The Word of God is alive. When He sends forth His Word, it cannot return to Him void meaning that it must accomplish what it was sent forth to do. We must know the Word of God to be revived. To discover what the Word says about us and our life is total and complete empowerment arming our spirit to overcome our flesh. Do you delight in the Word of God? Do you love it? When was the last time you sat down to read it, or tuned in to listen to it, or prayed it or spoke it? Have you spent any time studying it and how it applies to your life? What about doing it? This is not a message of condemnation but rather the plea much like “Sam I am” who asked simply, “Do you like green eggs and ham?” All Sam wanted was for his friend to try them. How can you claim a promise that you didn’t even know was made? How can you hope for the unknown? God has given us His Spirit and Truth to revive us, renew us and produce His Glory in our life every single day that we live on this side of Eternity. What are you doing to unite the two in your life?
Psalm 119:149 (NLT)
In your faithful love, O Lord, hear my cry; let me be revived by following your regulations.
As I am writing, Izzy is tucked under a blanket sleeping on my lap. She is in time out. As much as the two dogs are becoming companions, sometimes she just doesn’t know how to give it a rest so she must be removed to get herself together. As much as her entrance into his life has revived Chico, sometimes he is not too enamored with it like at 5:30 AM when he wants to go back to bed and she wants to play. Change is not always comfortable so with that thought in mind I will whisper this part. Sometimes a change is required to be revived. I know. I know I am not a fan of change either but as uncomfortable as it may be the Spirit and God’s Truth may reveal some things that are literally sucking the life right out of us. We must allow the Lord to remove or make the necessary change in order to continue to be renewed. “Let me be revived by following your regulations.” You cannot have God’s Way by doing things your way. It would be closely knit to the definition of insanity which is to do the same thing over and over expecting different results. His Blood is enough. His Grace is sufficient. I must step into right standing with God and choose to remain there in order to experience the constant revival, renewal and restoration possible in Jesus Christ.
Psalm 51:10-12 (NLT)
Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation and make me willing to obey you.
Repentance is the precursor to renewal, restoration and revival. This is good news for us! We can ask the Lord with each new day scooping up that fresh new mercy (Lamentations 3:22-23) to create in us a clean heart. We can ask Him to renew a loyal spirit without expecting punishment for the days that we stray. He will never take His Spirit from those who live in repentance acknowledging their need and desire for Christ. He will take His Word and wrap it around our heart while filling us with His Spirit until He overflows in us. We can live happily saved and willing to serve. I want to be revived today. I want to experience the joy of my salvation all over again. It is not time to throw in the towel for I have only begun to run the race of faith! All I need is a little revival in my heart and mind. Lord, revive me again.
Romans 15:13 (NLT)
I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.