Wilt thou not revive us again: that thy people may rejoice in thee?
I really want to choose careful words here as I delve into this next topic. Causing offense or divisions in the body of Christ is not and never has been my objective. So, please just bear with me as I run through this thought. Thanks!
God is clearly all for us expressing joy, and even emotive joy over the blessings He has clearly given us. In our verse above, the Psalmist clearly asks to be revived so that the people can rejoice. We see this in other places as well:
After his sin with Bathsheeba and his restoration(revival one might say) David had the following to say:
Psalm 51:12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit.
The congreation sang the following in song to celebrate their return from captivity in Babylon:
Psalm 126:2 Then was our mouth filled with laughter, and our tongue with singing: then said they among the heathen, The LORD hath done great things for them.
Who can forget David dancing for joy upon the return of the Ark of the Covenant in 2 Samuel 6?
Obviously, joy and excitement at revival and restoration is very appropriate and highly encouraged by our Lord. Why then, do I raise this issue? What do we need to consider when we balance the emotional aspects of revival?
Did revival make me happy, or did it make me change? I can be whirling in the aisles and barking like a dog during service, but If I leave as the same person I came in as, then I was not revived.
Was the focus on the emotional aspects of revival, or on the sound preaching and admonishment of the Word of God? If the focus is on how excited I got, then I have become the focus, and not God. If I, or anyone else was the focus, then we were not revived.