When the Messiah blesses us with a spiritual awakening, He wants to wake us up to our surroundings. To get our attention. To truly see the people, places, practices, and things we're involved with. This includes both the physical and the spiritual realm.
Not everyone or everything is supposed to remain in our lives forever. Each has a special time, season, and purpose. Oftentimes, this increase in our awareness is meant to wake us up in effort to release something or someone that's holding us back from walking in our destiny.
Our new awareness will break our heart for what breaks God's heart. And so the grieving began in my sacred journey. I was a broken mess. Not just from the loss of my beloved pets, Samson and Sabrina, or my mom's battle with brain cancer.
But I was also broken when called by God to end this chapter in my life. To bravely surrender my old ideas, thoughts, and beliefs, especially about religion. To let go of people, places, and things that no longer served the Lord's plan for me.
During my spiritual awakening, I became more aware of what was happening within the Christian community. Awareness of tension inside the church. The quarreling. The blatant sin. The inaccuracies of preaching and teaching, which didn't match God's Word. Cliques that resembled a fancy country club, rather than a traditional church.
In addition, I experienced a heightened awareness of Christians on social media. People who were leaders. Those who I greatly admired. Believers who had power, fame, and fortune. And a long list of dedicated followers. Several Christian leaders were in popular ministries or mega churches. Others were authors, speakers, coaches, or entrepreneurs.
Yet, at times they displayed ungodly behaviors. Or they shared religious content in which I thoroughly researched to learn that it was incorrect and not biblically-based. Sometimes, my awareness discerned false prophets who disguised themselves to be someone they were not. The Bible warns us, “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” Matthew 7:15 (KJV)
For me personally, professionally, and spiritually, it was agonizing. It cut like a knife. My newfound awareness overwhelmed me. Countless tears were shed as I moved forward in my spiritual awakening.
It was a soul cry. Less of me. More of God. An internal longing to be one with Christ. Him alone.
Without the secular world. Without rigid religion. Without church rituals. Without jumping through a dozen hoops to prove myself as a worthy believer. To let go of the external and the superficial to embrace authenticity.
Are you in the midst of a spiritual awakening?
The spiritual awakening process is like rebirth. Gradually, the false pretenses that had once blinded us are replaced with a great awakening to our Savior. To His true nature. To His wonderful character. To His faithfulness.
His infinite love washes over us. We're bathed in His glorious presence. His Holy Spirit fills us with goodness. We're at peace. All is well with our souls.
I love how John Piper, an anointed pastor and author explains a spiritual awakening. He says, “I want to see God send a great spiritual awakening marked by a passionate, God-centered, Christ-exalting, Bible-saturated consensus rooted in the fullness of central gospel truths. Spiritual awakening is mainly about more and more people seeing and savoring the glory of Jesus Christ. And that glory shines most brightly when his beauty is seen most clearly, and savored most dearly.”
That is what I so long for as I near the end of my sacred wandering. To savor my intimacy with Christ. To marvel in His majesty. To shine brighter for Him.
For a Holy Spirit-inspired movement. Not only within me, but within you, within our local communities, and within our entire world. For the Holy Spirit to radically ignite a greater flame of passion for God in our hearts.
"And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed." Romans 13:11 (NIV)