One of the things that stops a move of God is that people are locked in themselves and God can’t move the way He wants to. People say they want a revival, but it has to fit their denomination. They’re waiting for God to move in a way that fits what already exists.
I’ve prayed for thousands and seen God move with such power that is sweeps through the people. He moves with great power, like a mighty rushing wind.
But there are always people that come up in every service who, no matter what God does, stand praying, “Thank You, Jesus, thank You, Lord,” with a pained look on their face. There is nothing wrong with that. However, if its your habitual response to God and nothing is happening, maybe you should change your response. But you can’t if you’re locked in yourself and God is locked out.
Waiting for God to move in the church system that locks His presence out is part of the problem. Although millions of Christians are hungry for an experience with the presence of God, they don’t understand that His presence will not fit the present system.
All over the world people tell me how hungry they are for God and how hard they are trying. I’ve never met a pastor who said, “I’m not really that hungry, but would you pray for me anyway?” They tell me, “Oh, I’m just so hungry for God.” But when you pray for them, you can tell that they’re all locked up.
Thousands have told me, “I’m so hungry for revival,” but they still haven’t got it after many years. It’s time to stop standing with your hands in the air, waiting for something to fall out of the sky, and start figuring out what’s wrong with us.
Accommodating the Stronger Presence
When the presence of God comes, His presence should be stronger than any other presence in the room. You know how difficult it is to minister in your church, even though you’re all fired up and you want revival. Every one carries a presence with them. Some of you have a stronger presence than others, but everybody’s got it. Some people in your church have a strong presence when God wants to move by his power. We want His presence, but you can’t have multiple presences. His presence has to be the dominant presence in the room.
The presence of God is not the stronger presence in most churches. It’s not hard to get the power of God to come down. He wants to come down. But it’s the conditions that you try to get Him to come down in that makes it hard. Throughout the Bible, He wants to be the God of a people. He wants to come and walk among us. God wants to come down in your church and your life, but the circumstances you require or beg Him to come down in don’t fit.
Churches don’t get a move of God because the people are locked up in their opinion. Revival has to fit their opinion, their presence, their way, their music and their denomination. You’ll never get God to move in your church if you want your presence more than you want His presence.
Competitors With God’s Presence
You may try to preach a strong message, but a person on the board or somebody who has been there a long time sends out their presence that is resisting the message. In the middle of the wonderful sermon, you’re locked into this battle. Are you going to preach your strong message or will you back down?
The presence of men or women with money—who sign your paycheck and who could instantly vote you out if they don’t like your message—is a terrible presence. Many of the people who preach in our churches live under this terrible, ungodly presence. We’re accustomed to churches where the presences of people dominate the service. You feel that presence and you back down from what God wants to do.
A challenge of being a man or a woman of God is to not be dominated by the presence of visible people, but to be moved by the presence of an invisible God. Otherwise, you’ll never be able to experience the presence of God because He’s not going to come down in that atmosphere and share himself. He just backs away.
If you want to be a carrier of revival, there’s something you need to do. If you want the presence of God with you, then your presence must decrease. He’s not going to lay His presence on top of your presence. People want the presence of God to come down while they carry their own presence, style and being. They’re putting forth their own presence constantly—their wants, likes, moods, emotions, how they feel and what happened to them in my past. You’re not going to get the presence of God until you’re willing to live without your presence. You need to want His presence more than you want your presence. The Bible says you need to lose your life, and then you’ll find life.