Is there any question that we desperately need a great spiritual move of God in Oklahoma and America? I doubt anyone reading this article would argue a different point of view. The headlines that fill our news outlets speak of sexual perversion and assault, crimes from theft to murder, financial crimes, greed and a multiplicity of dark acts by man toward one another. The election cycle saw the advance of the homosexual agenda and availability of drugs. Drive the roads of Oklahoma and you will be confronted with gambling opportunities every few miles. I could go on and on . . .
I personally find the state of the church and compromised living of those who are part of the church far more disturbing. Immorality, hypocrisy and a plethora of unloving acts toward brothers and sisters cast a dark shadow of brokenness over the church. Few weeks go by that we do not get reports or requests to help churches in turmoil.
Recently, the report from Pew Research indicated that there is a continued rise of those in America who claim no religious affiliation. Young people are walking away from the church and religion at an alarming rate.
Frankly, any serious-minded follower of Christ could fall on their knees in a state of despair and hopelessness. Is there any hope to see the church revived and renewed? Can the American church return from liberalism and unbiblical actions that defy the truth it is to proclaim? Can Baptists in Oklahoma and nationwide turn from compromised lifestyles and destructive actions by individuals in the church that lead to church splits?
Yes, and a thousand times yes! God’s Word is clear that revival and renewal within a culture come when the people of God turn in repentance from their sins, renew their walk with God and fall in love with Jesus afresh. The hope of Oklahoma is a cleansed and revived church! The hope of America and the world is a church, ablaze with the power of the Holy Spirit, carrying the Good News of Jesus from the church house to the marketplace.
With this in mind, I am calling Oklahoma Baptists to give the first few weeks of the new year to fervent prayer. Beginning Jan. 6, 2013, and for 21 days, we will pray daily and conclude with solemn assemblies in our churches on Jan. 27, the night before our State Evangelism Conference. For churches in the Oklahoma City area, we are asking them to consider joining a large solemn assembly at Oklahoma City, Southern Hills at 5:30 p.m. on Jan. 27. This church is the location of the evangelism conference, and our time together will be a high-spiritual hour as we begin two days of spiritual renewal and focus on reaching Oklahoma with the Gospel.
Greg Frizzell has written a new book for you to follow in your quiet time over the 21 days leading up to the solemn assemblies. The book is called Return to Me says the Lord!— A Journey to First Love Surrender. You can order your copy online at www.bgco.org/prayer, or by calling the Prayer & Spiritual Awakening Office at 405/942-3000, ext. 4517.
Let’s begin the year on our knees seeking God for cleansing and renewal. Let’s pray for a move of God in our hearts and that of the church. May we cry out to God for our state and nation!