By Mike McClung (adapted from his book Restoring the Ruins)
But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God (1 Cor. 2:9-12).
Limited vision produces limited people and limited fulfillment of purpose. Mike Bickle, Director of Friends of the Bridegroom Ministries and the International House of Prayer in Kansas City, once told me that he believed that imparting vision was the key to dealing with rebellion and lack of discipline in the lives of God’s people. I believe this is a profound insight. We become what we behold: “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord” (2 Cor. 3:18). Anyone who has ever driven a car knows the feeling of something catching their attention off to one side of the road, only to look back to the front to see their vehicle swerving in the direction they had just been looking. One of the tragic things that has happened to the bride of Christ, especially in western society, is the lack, or inconsistency, of leaders in the church focusing the vision of God’s people on the Person and purposes of the Lord Jesus Christ. These purposes entail more than winning the lost, although this is a primary objective. The purposes of God are always kingdom purposes, with a view of exercising the dominion mandate man was originally given. (Gen. 1:26-27.) We are to exercise the authority of the Lord in every dimension of life and society: family, socially, politically, economically, music and the arts. But we have, in many ways, become Laodicea – focused on this present life and materialistic in our desires, habits and activities…even in church! Instead of getting the people of God ready for a final outpouring and resulting harvest of the glory and power of God in these last days, we have in many ways developed a “bunker” mentality. We sit around waiting for a rescue in the nick of time, while letting the powers of darkness run rampant, plaguing, afflicting and destroying the lives and destinies of people and nations, and releasing and enforcing curses on the very land itself. Proverbs 29:18 states: Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint…. Lawlessness, carnality and purposelessness mark the present generation in western society. We have become what we have been beholding! But a new generation is beginning to arise under a new kind of leadership that will impart vision of the Person of the God-Man. This will, 1) reveal to us our identity as lovers and sons and daughters of God, and, 2) reveal a vision of destiny – that to which God has called and destined us for in these last days. That destiny is to fully possess the promises laid up for us. (1 Peter 1:3-5.)
The Lord is searching for those who hunger after His heart. Scripture declares that the Lord’s eyes “run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him” (2 Chron. 16:9). The Lord is still looking for the “heart of David” in His people. When He finds this, His kingdom will be released and established. In order to better understand the “heart of David,” let’s first examine the best example found in scripture of the complete opposite nature – that exhibited by King Saul.
Part One of Four: Introduction and The Shearer Schoolhouse
One of my favorite subjects of study is revival history. The study of other forms of history can be frightening considering how much we see it repeating itself lately, particularly in the government and economic realms. However, revival history takes the same principle question that usually causes fear – “What if it happens again?” – and makes it a buoy of our faith and overwhelmingly encouraging, “What if God does this again?!”. While we can certainly count on evil to continue in its dark agenda, we can rely on the Lord even more to bring about His kingdom here on earth. (Heb. 13:8)
Recently, I posted something every day for a week on Facebook regarding revival history in East Tennessee, about which I imagine, many around here may not know. I have two reasons for this. First, Friday, March 22, 2019, marked the 60th anniversary of an incredibly significant God-event in our local history, which I will touch on later. Second, there has been a considerable amount of future history written involving East Tennessee and the broader region in the last few years. And just like our past revivals, I am sure most around here do not know about it either. When I say, “future history”, that is my way of saying ‘promises from the Lord over an entire area which are confirmed by multiple sources who do not know each other.’ Call it prophecy if you like as that is what the Bible calls it. However, this is not like the abuses of prophecy you may have seen. And since it is in the Bible, we do not have permission to dismiss the real just because we have seen error. The truth is… the heart of the Lord for the future of our area has been disclosed, and we need to get ourselves connected with it through prayer, covenant-building and much more. Or else, He may walk on past our boat on His stroll across the stormy seas of our nation. (Mark 6:4)
Remember the Law of Moses, My servant, which I commanded him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments. Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD. And he will turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the earth with a curse (Mal. 4:4-6).
Curses crumble when generations are joined together. Curses impact generations in a specific bloodline through a family, and they also impact cultures or nations, through a tribe or people group. The cause and cure remain the same. The generations must join together, through the redemptive power of the cross and blood of Christ, or the bondage, habits and mindsets of peoples and nations will change little. But…this is changing. When God begins to answer the cries of His people for deliverance from bondage, he first moves on the “fathers,” or leaders, to make the initial step for change.