Our Return Begins Our Revival
Zechariah 1:3 & 4 NKJV
3 “Therefore say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts: “Return to Me,” says the Lord of Hosts, “and I will return to you,” says the Lord of hosts.
4 “Do not be like your fathers, to whom the former prophets preached, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts: “Turn now from your evil ways and your evil deeds.”’ But they did not hear nor heed Me,” says the Lord.
After seventy years of captivity and exile in Babylon for disobeying His Word, God brought His people back to Jerusalem to build His Temple, and He gave them this beautiful call and promise in Zechariah 1:3, “Return to Me… and I will return to you.”
I think this is a reminder to God’s people that God did not just want them to return physically to the land of Jerusalem, but to personally return spiritually to Him as their Lord as well. God did not want the people to return to only physically build the Temple of God, but to also build themselves up spiritually and to build the Kingdom of God in the city by bearing His light to their generation and the generations to come.
“Return to Me… and I will return to you,” says the Lord of hosts. This call and promise still stand for every believer of Christ, in our day and age.
Having to return to God implies that we once were with Him but have departed from Him somewhere along our faith journey. While we are not in exile like how the people were taken from Jerusalem to Babylon, we may have made ourselves an exile or outcast of some sort concerning God’s plans and will for us because there are some areas in our life, we are no longer living in obedience to God’s Word.
Have you been estranged from God and are living your life apart from Him and His presence? Do you sometimes feel afraid to put your trust in God in your everyday life matters because you have begun to doubt that He will ever move in your life?
Today, the Lord Almighty is lovingly telling you, “Return to Me… and I will return to you.” Your Heavenly Father is calling you to return to your first love for Him. He is urging you to return to an intimate Father-child relationship with Him. It is only when you do so that you are allowing yourself to once again experience the immense love of your Father and the riches of His glory.
For some of us, we may have begun to worship God with our lips, but not with our heart anymore. While God calls for us to worship Him in spirit and in truth, we have slipped into offering Him empty worship – void of love, devotion and adoration. While we sing songs of worship, we no longer have a heart of worship.
Today, our God Almighty is exhorting us, “Return to Me… and I will return to you.” God is calling out to you and me to stop our superficial and empty worship because we cannot find Him there. God is calling us to return to a heart of worship where we worship Him simply because He is God Who deserves all worship and glory.
Knowingly or unknowingly, the standards of today’s world have seeped into the way we live and for some of us, we may have begun to set the standards of our lives based on these standards of the world. The dreams and aspirations we talk about now primarily involve pursuit of career advancement, starting a family or building enough wealth for our children’s future needs. While these are all certainly areas that God wants to abundantly bless and prosper His children in, He is calling us to remember His purpose and calling for us.
“Return to Me… and I will return to you,” says the Lord of hosts.
Return to God to behold His vision and do what He says. The Word of God tells us in Proverbs 29:18 MSG, “If people can’t see what God is doing, they stumble all over themselves; But when they attend to what He reveals, they are most blessed.”
Today, let us heed the Voice of the Lord. Make a commitment to return to His vision of seeing His glory and salvation reach the ends of the earth. Keep our commitment by returning to God through surrendering our lives over to Him and obeying His Word and attending to what He reveals to us. Keep our commitment to God aflame by always returning to Him with a heart of worship.
Our return to God sparks the beginning of our spiritual revival, which sets forth the revival of the world today, “so that at the Name of Jesus every knee will bow… and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:10 & 11 NASB
Let us pray.
“Dear Heavenly Father, we declare Jesus Christ is King. We confess and repent of those times when we have allowed doubt and circumstances to estrange us from You. We come before You this day asking for Your forgiveness and commit to return to an intimate relationship with You as our Father, devoting ourselves in prayer, studying of Your Word and in a lifestyle that pleases and glorifies You. Cleanse me and purify me, O Lord, that I constantly have a heart of worship towards You. I surrender and offer up all of me to You, O God. In Jesus’ Name, I pray. Amen.”