Prayer – The Birthplace Of Revival
In the early 1950’s, during the Hebrides revival, Douglas Bushby met with leaders of a revival in East Africa and gave the following report:
I asked Dr. Joe Church, a physician and surgeon, to tell me the beginning of the revival in Africa. He came down to the coast, he said, hungry for God, and frustrated. Here this praying man with the yearning heart met another praying man, a native African. Together Dr. Church and his African friend traced down every Scripture about the Holy Spirit. They came to that verse, "So is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey Him" (Acts 5:32).
"This was riveted in my mind," said Dr. Church. "Nobody came to me," he continued, "with five points on revival or with a formula for revival. And I have found that when people try to copy revival or anything spiritual, they get off the center. Revival cannot be copied. It must be repeated. Christ is the center. Christ is revival when He has full sway in the human heart."
William Nagenda, another leading African in this revival, said, "I cried unto God for power. I went out into the jungle and fasted and cried unto God night and day, for spiritual power. I fasted three days a week, and wept, and spent half nights in prayer.
"Then God spoke to me, ‘What you need is to walk with Jesus daily.’ The Lord said, ‘There is no other victory, but through the blood. The Holy Spirit points to Jesus.’"
Another medical missionary said, "God showed me this verse: ‘Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls’ (Matt. 11:28-29).
"I found out then that revival is walking yoked up with Jesus. You become broken in spirit, when you walk with Jesus. Revival is walking with Jesus. Revival is Jesus – it is daily, momentarily to be with Jesus. It is broken-heartedness and openness with one another."
You cannot copy Jesus, so do not expect to be able to copy the moving of the Holy Spirit. But you can walk with Him in this way of daily, personal revival.
To experience this daily presence of Jesus, you have to be willing to call sin, sin. There in East Africa they confess things as sin, which here we pass over and call "infirmities." There must be daily cleansing in His blood, to have this walk with Jesus. Are your hands clean? Do you have a pure heart? Is Jesus occupying the central place in your life?
As William Nagenda and Dr. Church talked to me of the Ruanda Revival, they agreed the central power house of the revival is in a little hut on a tea plantation where this humble, sweet, broken African spends his days and his life in outpoured prayer.
I was given a new revelation of the power there is in the blood of Jesus – the protection that lies in the blood of the Lamb to keep my own heart clean before Him. I saw beneath Calvary a big pool of blood. I felt the need to put my whole personality and being under the blood of Jesus. Down at the foot of the Cross, the power of the blood is power against the darts of the enemy. The light of the Holy Spirit reveals, and the penetrating blood heals. Jesus is revival. And what more could you want than Jesus?