By WALTER ALBRITTON
Hughes Auditorium is packed. Standing room only. The place seats 1,600. People out on the steps praying. The result of a revival that broke out last Wednesday in Asbury University, a Christian college in Wilmore, Kentucky. Six days later, as I write this, the revival continues. Hundreds of students praying, singing, dancing in the aisles, repenting, seeking forgiveness, interceding for others, finding peace with God, praising Jesus and praying for one another in dozens of prayer huddles. Amazing. Hallelujah.
Sunday night the university president, Dr. Kevin Brown, spoke these words to the huge crowd experiencing the “thick” presence of God: “So when people see us, they see one accord. For this generation, for the church, for the world, for the edification of our neighbor and for the glory of God. This is not a Hughes Auditorium thing. This is not an Asbury thing. This is a Kingdom thing!” He was saying what most of us are thinking: This revival is something God is doing — and we are amazed and thankful for it.
A friend who is experiencing the revival at Asbury emailed me, “The presence of God is overwhelming — powerful, strong, wonderful. My heart is being melted by the love I am feeling. I am trembling right now as we are all singing “On Christ the solid Rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand”! As I read his words, I started praising God.
There are reports that what’s happening at Asbury is spreading to campuses in other states. How do we explain this? It is surely God at work, releasing the power of his Holy Spirit to answer the prayers of people who are hungry for God and a relationship with His Son Jesus. People everywhere are hungry for what God alone can provide, and God is manifesting His Presence to souls seeking him. Lives are being changed by the power and presence of the Holy Spirit.
The song my friend said was being sung at Asbury is one of my favorites — “My Hope I Built.” The words point where those changed by this revival experience should land when this rich time of praise and worship is concluded. They need to land on Christ the solid Rock. There alone will they find the hope needed for victorious living that is finally consummated with eternal life. By standing on Christ, they will be given a new zeal to share the good news with millions living now without Christ and blindly unaware that they are standing on sinking sand.
Would to God that the Asbury revival might be the beginning of a new Great Awakening that could turn our nation to Christ and away from the sinking sand of immorality, behavior that ignores the moral guidelines of the Bible. Let us merge our prayers with the Asbury prayers and pray that God will use this revival to persuade thousands to stand on the Solid Rock whose life-changing power is described so masterfully in Edward Mote’s great hymn:
My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness;
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.
On Christ the solid Rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand.
When darkness veils His lovely face,
I rest on His unchanging grace;
In every high and stormy gale,
My anchor holds within the vale
His oath, His covenant, His blood
Support me in the whelming flood;
When all around my soul gives way,
He then is all my hope and stay.
When He shall come with trumpet sound,
O may I then in Him be found!
Dressed in His righteousness alone,
Faultless to stand before the throne!
Come, Lord Jesus, come. Continue to manifest your presence until we, too, with unbridled enthusiasm, wholly lean on You for the hope and help we need. Glory.