On page 24, they begin their devotional thought by quoting from the Old Testament Book of Amos:
This is what he showed me: The Lord was standing by a wall that had been built true to plumb, with a plumb line in his hand. And the Lord asked me, "What do you see, Amos?" "A plumb line," I replied. Then the Lord said, "Look, I am setting a plumb line among my people Israel; I will spare them no longer" (Amos 7:7-8).
Then they add these insightful thoughts:
In Scripture God uses the idea of a plumb line to describe what He does with His rebellious people. A plumb line is a weight on the end of a string, and it is used to make sure a wall is straight (perpendicular to the ground). God had built His people like a straight wall - true to plumb. But in Amos' day they had departed from His standard and didn't realize how far they had departed. God was preparing to send judgment on them, and He wanted them to understand why.
When we depart from Him, we often do not realize how far we have departed. When we compare ourselves with other people or churches that have departed from God, we may look OK. We may not realize how close we are to complete collapse or destruction. In order to help His people, God holds a plumb line beside them so that they can see how far they have departed.
The Leaning Tower of Pisa is a physical example of this spiritual truth. A bell tower was built in Pisa, Italy. The ground beneath the tower was not solid enough to support the weight of the tower, and it began to sink on one side. Now the tower leans more than 17 feet-off-center. The walls are straight, but-the whole building leans. The problem is with the foundation. If the foundation were firm and in line, the walls would be in line as well. Even if a huge crane pulled the walls to plumb again, the problem would immediately return. Without a solid foundation, the tower would sink and be crooked again.
In a similar way, your spiritual life has its foundation in a love relationship with God. The way you live your life, your practice of your faith, and your obedience to God's commands can be represented by the tower. If your life (or your church) is out of line with God's plan, that is merely a visible symptom of a root problem. The problem is in your love relationship. Jesus said, "'If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching'" (John 14:23).
God's Word reveals God Himself, His purposes, and His ways. The Scriptures serve as God's plumb line for us. When we can see that we have departed from His Word to us, we can clearly know that we have a problem. The problem is that we have left our love relationship with Him. You cannot love God correctly and not obey Him fully. It is spiritually impossible. If you are disobeying God, it is because you do not love Him. Jesus said, "'He who does not love me will not obey my teaching"' (John 14:24).
If your obedience to the Lord's commands is the dear indicator of whether you love Him, what would your obedience say about your love for Christ? What would your church's obedience say about its love for Christ?
In His first letter to the churches in Revelation, the risen Christ invited the church in Ephesus to hear and respond to Him. Jesus commended its hard work, perseverance, and intolerance of evil. Yet it had a fatal flaw. Jesus set a plumb line alongside the church so they would clearly know what was wrong. You read that "plumb line" previously in Revelation 2:4-5. They had departed from their first love, and they needed to return or suffer the consequences.
The primary reason we need revival is that we have forsaken our love relationship with God—our first love. God invites us to repent and return to our first love. His word to the-church at Ephesus indicates that failure to repent can be fatal. To the extent that we fail to return to our first love, we will miss out on the abundant life He intends for His people, and a lost world will continue its march into a lost eternity.
Their concluding admonition is quite apropos:
“Let the Lord begin to set the plumb line of Scripture alongside your life, your family, your church, your denomination, and even your nation. Let Him show you any place you have departed. When you see the signs of departure, remember that restoration must begin in the heart. Let God bring you to a place where you experience a broken heart over your broken relationship. "Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret" (2 Cor. 7:10).
SOURCE: Henry Blackaby and Claude King, Fresh Encounter (Nashville: Lifeway Press, 2006), pp. 24-25.