One of the first signs of new life erupting in nature is that the buds on the trees and shrubs begin to swell. The entire silhouette of the trees has been changing for the past two weeks. This is a sign that they will burst out in new growth within a short time. This sign is an assurance that the plant community will bloom again.
As I contemplate this sign in nature I see a similar swelling, so to speak, in the Christian community. As all of nature prepares to burst forth in bloom, the community of faith in Jesus Christ is swelling through their prayers and fasting for our nation that is in desperate need of a great awakening.
Sadly, the Church became ineffective when complacency set in, and the enemy of our souls filled the void. Our nation has become like a parched desert, in desperate need of living water. God addresses this issue in the letter to the Church in Laodicea. "I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm--neither hot nor cold--I am about to spit you out of my mouth. You say, 'I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.' But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see. Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent...He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches." (Revelation 3:15-22)
There are powerful leaders in the Christian community who have heard from the Lord and have been willing to sacrifice their lives to rally the troops to turn America back to God by uniting us in prayer and fasting for our nation. Such leaders as Dutch Sheets (Appeal to Heaven), Lewis Hogan (United Cry DC16) and Lou Engle (The Call Azusa Now) have been sent by God, like Elijah, to prophesy over our dry bones and to call forth breath into our very being that we may live the way God intended for us to live.
The remnant of God's people is pregnant with anointing to break the yoke of oppression, to set the captives free and to restore righteousness to our land. We are like the people of Israel when God told them through the prophet Isaiah that the burden of the Assyrians would depart from them. "In that day their burden will be lifted from your shoulders, their yoke from your neck; the yoke will be broken because you have grown so fat." ("because of the anointing." - KJV) (Isaiah 10:27)
I hear the Lord calling us to abundant life. I sense His desire for deep intimacy with us. I remember that Jesus came to earth as the Redeemer. I wonder if this might be the Kairos time for the Kingdom of Heaven to break into earth in its fullness. We are in the midst of the year of Jubilee, a year meant for freedom, redemption and restoration. Could it be that we are on the earth for such a time as this? I believe that the remnant of God's church is being called to join the movement to restore our nation to its godly foundations. We are pregnant with the purposes of God, like the swelling tree buds that are preparing to break forth and are a sign that the time is drawing near.
We want to be part of this remnant to restore our nation to its godly inheritance. The labor is not easy, but we do not want to miss this opportunity to birth the purposes of the Lord here on earth. The word of the Lord goes out from His mouth. It will not return to Him empty, but will accomplish what He desires and achieve the purpose for which it was sent. (Isaiah 55:11) I hear Him saying, "The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom, it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy...'Be strong, do not fear, your God will come...' Then the eyes of the blind will be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the mute tongue shout for joy. Water will gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert." (Isaiah 35:1-6)
Joan E. Mathias