I’m worried about my spiritual health. Our pastor is doing revival meetings, but having folk confessing sins and giving testimonies arouses a sense of suspicion in me that’s disturbing. I feel guilty that I feel this way. What’s wrong with me? Can you give me a spiritual prescription? I do want to be a good Christian.
From reading your question it’s apparent that you’re feeling guilty about not experiencing an emotional high over this revival process. Possibly you’ve seen this before and may have doubts about the sincerity of the revival in your church. You may be a different personality from others, and we need to make allowances for those differences.
Many of us fail to grasp that the Holy Spirit is not some “liquid-like power” or “vapor” that envelops one, but is a Person—the “Comforter,” the “third Person of the Godhead.” Spirituality is a relationship with the Holy Spirit, Jesus, and the Father. To grow in spirituality is to fall in love with Jesus and to enjoy a relationship that is rich, mature, and ongoing.
We all need constant revival, renewal, healing, and a rewarding relationship, but, depending on one’s personality, there are different ways of nurturing a relationship. We all don’t fit the same mold.
God made each of us unique. Some of us are sober and intense; others are extroverted and flamboyant. Some pastors may strive to be “revivalists.” They may have developed a “cookbook” approach to spirituality and feel that if you do “thus and so,” you will become revived. For many, such structured processes do give results, but not for all.
Think of how people fall in love. Once the attraction is there, they can’t do enough for their sweetheart. They think about that person all the time and say nice things. Some buy gifts for their loved one. They enjoy walks together on the beach, holding hands in the moonlight. Each person falls in love their way, in a manner that suits their personality.
God is able to be all things to all people, and He understands you. He’s not worried about the process of your becoming His friend—as long as you do become His friend. The Spirit comes seeking to woo us. We often mistake the process for the whole objective.
Bible study and prayer are very important, yet how each of us reads the Bible may differ. One person may try to imagine being in the crowd and participating in the Bible story. Reading for 10 minutes, but then thinking about the story for the next 10 hours, can get some individuals into the story so intimately that they can feel the hair stand up on their neck as Lazarus comes forth. That is not to disparage the person who can read for a solid hour or two, but we must realize that people are different.
We definitely need a constant relationship with God. Reading the Word, meditation, and prayer are vital. Meditation and prayer should become anytime or all-the-time activities, especially as we sense His presence.
After decades of marriage many marriage partners understand their spouse so well that they can finish their sentences. In good marriages love and respect for each other grow. That’s the relationship God wants with us: natural and true, honest and open. Refocusing on God helps to revitalize the relationship, but it has to be done in ways that are natural.
Don’t worry about the methodology someone else uses; become content with seeking God in the way you feel most comfortable. A revival of true godliness finds expression in gentleness, humility, compassion, and caring—a willingness to suffer rather than to hurt another. These are the fruits of sanctification, which is a lifetime of revival.