Can I just be really honest and say family is hard? I love my family SO much, but it's still tough and messy at times. (I'm in the middle of three girls, so you know, it can be a bit dramatic at times.)
I've noticed in various conversations I've had with women over coffee, over Instagram DM's, or on the phone, that almost all of us have something in common: we are all praying for someone in our family to encounter God.
Maybe we are praying for them to have a fresh encounter, or maybe we are praying for them to encounter God for the very first time.
Maybe not in your immediate family, but definitely someone in one of your close circles is on your heart. (And if not, I bet God will bring someone to mind for you right now.)
There's this great song by Jesus Culture and Brian + Katie Torwalt called Gold. One of the lyrics is,
"God send a revival, and start it with me."
I pray that as I sing it all the time! Something that I've been thinking about as I've been praying that and singing it, is where does revival start?
I think it starts with us. I think it starts with our relationships and the people who we interact with frequently, our families, our close friends, our coworkers.
I think God placed us in those spaces we occupy frequently, in those relationships, because He's trusting us to bring revival.
But what does that practically look like? Especially with family, because like I said before, family is hard.
Here are a few quick tips on how to pray for revival for your family, because that's where I think it starts!
Holy Spirit Convicts so you Don't Have To
Holy Spirit has a reputation for convicting us, and that's absolutely something He does. But sometimes I've found it tempting to be the one who convicts, instead of trusting Him to convict others. This is especially with family and people who are close to us.
Because we are close in proximity and in relationship, it's easy to see how someone might be falling short and it's even easier to go straight to trying to convict and correct.
Instead of jumping in and trying to play Holy Spirit's part, let's all take a step back and allow Holy Spirit to convict in His own way and His own time.
Pray for Holy Spirit to convict people, but don't take matters into your own hands unless you feel like God is specifically calling you into a confrontation or conversation with someone. Often, Holy Spirit will do the work He needs to do in someone's heart and He will do it in a way that doesn't hurt our relationships.
Create an Atmosphere of Praise and Worship
Your presence impacts an atmosphere!
There have been times in my life when I have gone somewhere and it just feels dark. I need to remind myself that I am light ( because I have Holy Spirit in me) and that means that we carry light into the spaces we are in so they cannot be dark anymore.
When praying for revival in your family, start by creating an atmosphere of praise and worship. By just being a follower of Jesus, your presence can impact your home. As you pray for the atmosphere to shift, and invite the Holy Spirit into it, He will show up and fill the space.
An atmosphere that is filled with the fruit of the Spirit like peace, joy, and kindness will impact the people around you, and as you walk out your relationship with Christ at home, it will impact the whole home.
And then your neighbors, and then your communities, and eventually the whole world.
You Aren't Responsible to Defend God or Bring Revelation
God defends Himself. And He sees it all.
So when things get difficult and messy as you are praying for revival at home, remember that God can defend Himself.
You don't need to back up every theological argument. You don't need to know all of the answers. You don't need to defend the God of the universe to someone in your life who doesn't know Him, He can defend Himself. He can make Himself known.
Focus on praying for that: that He would make Himself known and defend Himself. He can prove Himself to anyone, and He knows the unique intricacies of our hearts, minds, and spirits. He knows because He made us, all of us, even that distant cousin who you literally cannot figure out. He can defend Himself. He can reveal Himself.
Just play your part by praying and asking Him to!