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National Leaders Convene a "Conversation on Revival"

"My hope grows each year that we are at the threshold of a great move of God,” commented David Bryant at the opening of a recent national gathering of Christian leaders.

Sponsored by the National Revival Network, the “National Conversation on Revival” (NCOR) was designed to bring together leaders with hearts for revival to pray, discuss, and listen to God about His purposes for the Church. About 70 leaders met at the historic Moody Church in downtown Chicago, IL, in summer 2011.

Through presentations, small group discussions, and reports of revival stirrings around the nation, the group spent considerable time discussing and praying with great hope for imminent revival.

A Renewed Hope

Robert Bakke, another one of the conveners, described the state of this nation in the 1700s just prior to perhaps the greatest awakening the United States has ever known. With obvious comparisons to today,

Bakke challenged the group. “What you do depends on your vision of history,” he said. “If it is negative, you defend and protect. But if it is positive, you can unite and confidently press forward with the belief that God is about to do the greatest thing He’s ever done.”

“It is a theology of hope,” Bakke added. Dale Schlafer confessed some of the discouragement the National Revival Network has experienced in the last few years. He described the process of several leaders writing, revising, signing, and publishing An Urgent Appeal, only to have it land “with a mighty thud.” A year ago, the network wondered if they should “go out of business.”

But now (referring to renewed interest at the NCOR), Schlafer declared, “God has birthed this day—and we believe God is up to something beyond what we know.”

Evidences of God’s Stirrings

Several leaders gave presentations on various aspects of revival, including the centrality and supremacy of Christ, a call for unity and purity, and revival founded in both the Word of God and the work of the Holy Spirit. Participants also shared encouraging stories of God’s stirrings of revival in different places around the nation.

An evidence of God’s work that was repeated several times related to stories of college campuses being touched with greater prayer and movements of revival.

In the spirit of Isaiah 40, leaders committed to “clear the highway and remove all obstacles,” getting everything ready as much as possible to receive the King of Glory in His revival fullness. With emphases on repentance, confession, and brokenness, as well as unity, reconciliation, lifestyle changes, and priority adjustments, participants left with an anticipation of preparing God’s people for a coming revival.

—CAROL MADISON is editor of Prayer Connect.

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