We live in a world where evil dominates the headlines and political chaos appears to reign. Many wonder if good can ever triumph over evil. Though our vision for the future may be bleak, God’s isn’t. In fact, His vision is full of hope. In this moment, He is preparing us for something greater. God is searching for men and women who long to be bold and bring Kingdom transformation to the world. There is amazing power that comes when we pray, “Your Kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven”. In the midst of one of the darkest seasons, Jesus taught a prayer that defied human reason. This wasn’t a “wish upon a star” sort of prayer intended for billions to pray but only a few to experience. Jesus actually expected us to believe that when we are empowered by the Holy Spirit, we can pull heaven down to earth. This prayer is just as accessible today as it was in Jesus’ time. If we harness the power of this prayer, the Church can become a catalyst for miraculous change in the world.
As Christians, we can be challenged to walk in signs and wonders as Jesus clearly outlined in the Bible, including Mark’s gospel: “He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved…These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover” (Mark 16:16-18). Jesus never meant for miracles to be an end in themselves, but rather be a catalyst of cultural transformation fueled by revival. Revival refers to a spiritual reawakening from a state of dormancy or stagnation in the life of a believer. It involves the resurrecting of a love for God, an appreciation of God’s holiness, an awareness of sin and a passion for His Word and His Church, and a desire to grow in His righteousness. Jesus’ mission of revealing the Kingdom can be identified in the word, righteousness. In Romans 14:17, we are told that the Kingdom of God is righteousness. Jesus also tells us in Matthew 6:33 to “Seek first the Kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” Righteousness means “right in the eyes of God”. We can only set out when we are right in the eyes of God.
Jesus told the city of Capernaum, “If the miracles had occurred in Sodom which occurred in you, it would have remained to this day” (Matthew 11:23). To the cities of Chorazin and Bethsaida He said, “If the miracles had occurred in Tyre and Sidon which occurred in you, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes” (Matthew 11:27). Our Lord’s message is clear. The manifestation of miracles is meant to create a world in revival. Miracles that would have transformed Sodom, Tyre and Sidon did take place in Capernaum, Chorazin and Bethsaida, yet those cities weren’t transformed. This may be a result of what Jesus said, “He who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father” (John 4:12). Without believers setting out, demonstrating the miracles of Jesus, the planet will shift into darkness, leaving hopelessness to encompass the earth. One of the most important gifts we can offer as Christians is the gift of hope.
Someone who is hopeless and alone usually cannot help themselves out of their situations. They have a great sense of loss. The Church has the power to come alongside and bring the Good News of Jesus Christ and all He has to offer. The Bible tells us, “The thief cometh not, but for to steak, and to kill and to destroy. I am come that they might have light, and that they might have it more abundantly’ (John 10:10). We have a responsibility as Christians to bring the Word of God with all its hope to someone who doesn’t know it is real. When we bring hope, we also bring life. This is more than just asking God for something we so badly need. We must expect our miracle. Somewhere in the midst of asking, believing and expecting God to answer, we will find what we are looking for. The Holy Spirit also offers believers much more. He loves us, protects us and assists us when we pray. He also works in and through us with divine power, and helps us to become like Jesus.
It’s hard to deny that things are becoming increasingly challenging here on Earth. Many of us are struggling through economic hardships while others live every day in fear for their life as the place that they call home is now an active war zone. But contrary to popular belief or what the media is portraying, there is more reason than ever to hope and the Church has an incredible opportunity to present that change to the world. Now is the time to release God’s Kingdom like a flood and make a profound mark on others. We are called to bring heaven to earth in the same manner Jesus did. This is how it should be: to see one of Christ’s true followers is to see Jesus, just as seeing Jesus was to see the Father. We have an incredible responsibility, but also an incredible opportunity to transform the world through Christ. Those who do not place their hope in God will stand without hope but those who do will stand in hope forever. Pray today that His will be done on earth as it is in Heaven! Incredible power comes when we, as a Church put these words into practice by living out Christ’s hope for us.