Summary: Saving America from our mess is bigger than who will be our next President. It is a prayerful dependence on God that comes by seeking God in his will; trusting God in his Grace; and Joining God in his Purpose.
1. I am convinced that America is in an almost hopeless mess.
a. Our hope is not in a new POTUS or US Congress
b. It is not on a new focus of government
c. Our hope is where it has always been, "In God We Trust" -- not our schemes/ourselves
2. Revival Prayer
In 1857 there was a 46 year old man named Jeremiah Lamphere who lived in New York City. Jeremiah loved the Lord, but he didn't feel that he could do much for the Lord until he began to feel a burden for the lost and accepted an invitation from his church to be an inner city missionary. So in July, 1857 he started walking up and down the streets of New York passing out tracts and talking to people about Jesus, but he wasn't having any success. Then God put it on his heart to try prayer. So he printed up a bunch of tracts, and he passed them out to anyone and everyone met. He invited anyone who wanted to come to the 3rd floor of an old Church on Fulton St. in New York City from 12 to 1 on Wednesday to pray.
He passed out hundreds and hundreds of fliers and put up posters everywhere he could. Wednesday came and at Noon nobody showed up. So Jeremiah got on his knees and started praying. For 30 minutes he prayed by himself when finally five other people walked in. The next week 20 people came. The next week between 30 and 40 people came. They then decided to meet every day from 12:00 to 1:00 to pray for the city. Before long a few ministers started coming and they said, "We need to start this at our churches". Within six months there were over 5000 prayer groups meeting every day in N.Y.C.
Soon the word spread all over the country. Prayer meetings were started in Philadelphia, Detroit, and Washington D.C. In fact President Franklin Pierce started going almost every day to a noonday prayer meeting. By 1859 some 15,000 cities in America were having downtown prayer meetings every day at noon and thousands were brought to Christ. The great thing about this revival is that there is not a famous preacher associated with it. It was all started by one man wanting to pray. See only God can start a revival and God is quite clear about what He expects before He will return to His people.
3. 2 Chronicles 7.11-22 (focus on 13-14)
You don't have revival by seeking revival, but by seeking God. If you and I will pray and seek God's face, He will hear, forgive, and heal. If God is going to come and be with His people, He is not going to come until his people ask him.
Yet sometimes people may feel the object of prayer is to overcome God's reluctance. It is like God is taking a nap, He really doesn't want to be disturbed, but if you pray just right and say the magic words, He might do something for you anyway.
Prayer is not overcoming God's reluctance; it is not saying the right string of words; prayer is: Seeking God in His Will; Trusting God in His Grace; and Joining God in His Purpose.
God is waiting to hear His people pray and ask for revival. And until some people get on their knees, humble themselves, seek God and ask Him to come, revival will not become a reality.
4. When the First Continental Congress met in September of 1774, one of the first actions of the Congress was. . . wait for it . . . to pray. [Pic of Chaplain Jacob Duche leading prayer; point out G. Washington
5. Dr. Benjamin Rush (PA) and John Adams (MA) became friends through the Continental Congress. After our War for Independence began, Dr. Rush came back from visiting the field hospitals of the Continental Army. Early in the conflict we had experienced massive losses. Rush asked Adams, "John, do you think we can win this war?" Adams replied, "Yes. If we fear God and repent of our sins."
6. Three Prayerful Actions for Reviving America:
I. In Prayer, Seek God in His Will
A. God's Will for Reviving the Land Begins with Us
1. My People/My Name (7.14)
2. IF Revival comes WE Must Start the Process through Prayer
a. Judgment begins with us -- 1 Peter 4.17
For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?
b. How Much More Serious for People Outside of Jesus?
B. God's Will Displays God as Seen in Jesus -- see me, see Father