Bob Stone over at Eagle Flight Ministries is passionate about genuine and authentic revival. One of his blogs is devoted to what he calls “The History and Future of the Chalk Revival”. He tells how he once visited a Promise Keeper’s meeting and heard someone give the following admonition:
"If you want to see revival, go into your prayer closet, take an imaginary piece of chalk and draw a circle around yourself, then pray until revival comes first to the person in that circle—until it comes to you."
He shares how, upon returning home, he was prompted by the Lord to announce to his congregation that individually and collectively they were to enter into the "Chalk Revival." What was to make this this revival unique was that it was not to be patterned after any past or present revival, but was to be a renewal unique to his church (Hillcrest Chapel) and initially, at least, to be focused on its individual attenders.
The primary focus was not to be on a corporate experience, any kind of exterior action, or on the style of our worship services. Rather, the focus was to be on a specific circle of revival – their own hearts.
He shares how it was introduced: “On the Sunday morning I announced the beginning of the Chalk Revival, I asked one of my associate pastors if he would find enough pieces of chalk for each adult in our congregation, and put each piece in a plastic bag. That was at 9:10 a.m. By 10:15 a.m. we had everything ready, and we gave them out that Sunday. This chalk … was to give us some focus and to be a reminder of the revival we were praying for!”
Then, for six months he emphasized and taught on one or more of seven prayer areas every Sunday. These prayers were not intended to address everything that a Christian should pray, but they do capsulize what the Chalk Revival is about for all those who desire a spiritual renewal.
His seven prayers or prayer themes, meant to encourage each person participating in the Chalk Revival, are:
1. A revitalization of my spiritual life and also of this church and our nation—2 Chronicles 7:14-15; Is. 6:1-8; 57:15.
2. A repentance from sin—secret sins—sins that wrap around my feet and trip me up; along with confession of sin to others; restitution for sin; and the granting of forgiveness to others when appropriate—Heb. 12:1; James 5:16; Luke 15:21; 19:1-10.
3. A restoration of my love for and study of the Word of God —Ps. 119:97-106; 2 Tim. 2:15.
4. A release of the Holy Spirit to give me empowerment for service and a compassion for lost people—Eph. 5:18-21; 1 Peter 4:10-11; Matt. 9:36.
5. A return to my first love, to love God and family more than ever before—Rev. 2:4; Mal. 4:5-6.
6. A remembrance and thanksgiving for all He has done for me—Rom. 1:21; Eph. 5:4; Heb. 12:28.
7. A reshaping of my praise and worship so I truly worship with my whole heart, body and life—Ps. 95:6; 100; Rom. 12:1; Eph. 5:18-21; Matt. 5:16; James 5:13.
Bob Stone is on to something here. For the church at large to experience spiritual renewal, personal revival must first be experienced by individual believers.
Is personal revival something we each need? Most likely. Is personal revival something we can each experience? Most definitely. Is personal revival something hard to experience? Most definitely not.
A piece of chalk, a simple circle, a few piercing questions, and above all, an open and honest heart before Almighty God. With these few things, and little more, each and every one of us might well be on our way to authentic and genuine personal revival! And so might God's Church!