Friday, June 17, 2011

BRC: A God-Sized Vision, week 5

It was very insightful to read about what has happened around the world. Chapter five is about the global awakening that took place in the early 1900s in Wales, India, Korea, and North America.

One thing that really impressed upon me are the events that led to revival in Korea. Dr. R. A. Hardie, a missionary to Korea was depressed and saddened by the lack of spiritual fruit they had experienced in amongst the Korean people. There was a tradition among the people. They churches there would set aside one week every year for nothing but small group devotionals (106). During this time, Hardie was impacted by a visiting missionary, M.C. White from China. After meditating on Luke 11:13, where Jesus says the Father would give the Spirit to everyone who asks, Hardie was moved to confession and repentance. "Hardie confessed his pride and explained how he was depending on his own efforts, not on the Holy Spirit" (106).

APPLICATION POINT #1: We Cannot Do It Ourselves. I think it is really easy in ministry to get where Hardie was. It is so easy to become dependent upon ourselves and not on the Spirit of God to do the work. If we are there, we will always become disappointed at some point.

Hardie decided he would confess his self-reliance to his people in his church. Because of his openness to his people, the Koreans were moved to make things right themselves. A revival started. "Confession humanized the missionaries, showing Koreans that the Westerners struggled with their own temptations and doubts" (108).

The stories of the revivals in Wales were impressive, yet left me hollow. They were filled with religious fervor, but something just didn't set right with me until I came to the end of the chapter. The authors explain towards the end of chapter that as quickly as the revivals came, they left. "We also know that Wales seems to have entirely forgotten its revival legacy. Wales is perhaps more immune to revival today because it has been inoculated with heavy doses of undiluted religious fervor" (115). As they investigated these revivals, they noticed one glaring deficiency. Evan Roberts, the main instrument in this revival, "did not prioritize Bible teaching" (115).

APPLICATION POINT #2: We Must Teach The Bible. There are many things we could possibly do for short-term growth. But if we are thinking of long-term sustaining revival ministry, we must uphold the Word of God and instruct people how to use it properly. They said, "Without the basic biblical formation, many caught up in the revival lacked the necessary tools for spiritual growth" (115).

What are we going to do? What did you learn from this chapter?

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