After such a wet winter and spring, we have hit an extended dry spell. Even the farmers are asking for us to pray for rain. My yard needs watering badly and if we don’t get some rain soon, I may have to get out the sprinklers.
I have been singing “Open the windows of heaven, let it rain…” for weeks now! I wake up with it on my mind, I hum or sing it throughout the day and I pray it with fervency and even desperation.
Of course, I want to see the natural rains that we need, but I am also praying with many believers who are also praying for spiritual rain as well. Very few of us have seen or experienced a true outpouring from God like I have read about where whole cities, regions and even nations are affected by the supernatural outpouring of God’s Spirit. Each outpouring looks a little different and there is no way to predict how the Lord will choose to pour out His Spirit, but no matter what it looks like, if it is Him pouring it out, I want to be right in the middle of it!
Can you imagine coming to Jerusalem for pilgrimage for one of the Jewish feasts (Pentecost) when all of a sudden, a loud rushing wind fills the city right at the normal time for the morning prayer gathering? The Passion Translation describes the event this way: (Acts 2:1-11) “The roar of the wind was so overpowering, it was all anyone could bear.”
I’ve been through storms, including hurricanes, and those winds can strike terror in the hearts of those who were experiencing them. “And then a pillar of fire appeared before their eyes.” I have not seen anything in the natural to compare a pillar of fire to! That is what I am talking about — we may see or hear things that make us uncomfortable or that we have nothing from our past experience to compare it to, but does that automatically invalidate it?
When Peter came forward to try to explain what had just happened, he quoted a familiar scripture (to them, mostly Jews) from the book of the prophet Joel. Evidently the 120 were acting so strange that some accused them of being drunk (at 9 in the morning).
After Peter shared with them from their own history, he shared with them their need of repentance. Three thousand people responded that day! And another 5,000 shortly thereafter. Now that sounds like a move of God! But it certainly looked different than what these Jews were used to. The birth of the church began that day and has grown or multiplied faster than any other religion to ever be introduced to earth.
I have been feeling a few drops of that spiritual rain beginning to hit here. The many, many prayers by the faithful ones are about to come to fulfillment. When Elijah prayed for rain after 3 ½ years of drought, he did not quit when he did not see the rain come immediately. He kept praying and interceding because the Lord told him it was time.
He sent his servant out numerous times until he finally reported back that he saw a cloud the size of a man’s hand. He immediately got up and told Ahab to get in his chariot and head back to Jerusalem because the rains were about to let loose. Then it says that Elijah himself began to run (on foot) toward the same place. He outran Ahab’s chariot — a supernatural feat showing the Lord’s affirmation upon his life and ministry.
Are you someone who has been praying and crying out to the Lord because of the desperate condition of our world? Revival almost without exception breaks out when things in the natural are very dark but the praying remnant (no, not everyone in the church has this holy desperation) just continues to beseech heaven for a breakthrough into the affairs of mankind. True moves of God are always, without exception, the direct result of people praying and interceding. Two older women in their 80s prayed for years in the Hebrides Islands for revival. God used them to birth something that has had lasting effects until this day. So it is not about numbers (of people praying) or notoriety (of the merit of those praying), but simply believers who will not let go until they see results.
The bowls of intercession in heaven are full and beginning to spill over. We will see the results of those prayers soon. Just as clouds can be “seeded” to produce rain in the natural, so too the seeds of revival have begun to spring forth from our prayers. We will see a move of God here. What will it look like? I do not know specifically, but I expect to see true conviction of sin.
I expect to see evil uncovered. I expect to see many set free from habits that have had them bound. I expect to see a righteous group of young people who finally find their true identity and begin to walk in the destiny that God has planned for them. I expect to see healings like we have read about in the gospels and the book of Acts.
My expectations are high and like Elijah, I will keep praying until I see the full manifestation of my prayers and the hundreds if not thousands who have also been praying. One couple close to my age with whom I pray stated this past week — “we are committed to pray for revival until it comes or for the rest of our earthly lives.” God will honor the prayers of faith being offered to Him for our region.
Let it rain, Lord! Open the windows of heaven with a mighty outpouring of your Spirit like you did on the day of Pentecost over 2,000 years ago. Open the windows of heaven like you did in the Hebrides Islands and in Wales and at Azusa Street and at Cane Ridge in Kentucky and like you did in New York City when businesses closed to pray.
Open the windows of heaven over Thomasville, Georgia and let it rain! We are ready and we are needy and some of us are desperate to see You move here.