A prayer of Habakkuk the prophet, according to Shigionoth.
O LORD, I have heard the report of you, and your work, O LORD, do I fear. In the midst of the years revive it; in the midst of the years make it known; in wrath remember mercy.
GOD, the Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet like the deer’s; he makes me tread on my high places.
To the choirmaster: with stringed instruments. (Habakkuk 3:1, 2, 19 / ESV)
I am re-reading the book by Hannah Hurnard, “Hinds Feet On High Places.” It is an allegory about a deer named Much-Afraid. She has two physical deformities that hold her back within her community and in her own mind. Yet, she is loved by the Good Shepherd, the One whom she wants to be like. She is journeying to the eternal home, which is the ability to leap over the High Places with Grace and Peace. In order to become a hind that can leap in such a way for eternity, she must take a journey.
It is a journey that transforms her from the inside out. As the transformation happens, her outward appearance changes as well. In the end, with the Good Shepherd’s parenting, mentoring and friendship, she succeeds. The prize is greater than imagined. Her deformities are healed completely, allowing her the full freedom the Good Shepherd promised.
But she had to do business with her name’s sake, “fear.” It was not natural. It came into her life from the outside and through ill-drawn conclusions on her own. She built her own prison and could only break free with the Good Shepherd’s help.
Much-Afraid was able to revive her spirit by being fully dependent on the Good Shepherd. He did not do her work for her, but encouraged her along. Hers was to listen and obey.
I have come to believe that revival is multi-faceted. If it is to be permanent, it is to be continually stoked all throughout life in its various forms.
To the best of my knowledge and belief, here’s what I understand:
Revival cannot take place in a spirit of fear, nor personal-surrender to the circumstances of one’s life and definitely not to limited self-perceptions.
Revival only can take place within an understanding of what the One healthy fear – fear of the Lord – produces: Wisdom. My take is from then on, fear does not reign, but faith and love reign with wisdom as my foundation.
Revival can only take place when I give my circumstantial life to the Lord to use for His glory. My take is from then on every moment, good or ill, serve as opportunities to move God’s Kingdom forward.
Revival can only take place when my self-perceptions are driven by the One True God and no other. My take is that from then on, my view is so rooted in Christ that no one can take my salvation away that I let them, including me.
One who follows Jesus, whether a well-known name or one whose name may never be uttered beyond family and friends, is a force to be reckoned with.
Philosopher cum prophetic-scientist Democritus said, “Man is a universe in little.”
I also am understanding that in God’s scientific economy, what goes down can come up. When it does, the bounce can be higher than one imagined before the downward turn.
When such a bounce occurs in my soul with God’s guidance, my revived spirit is better able to help other souls revive.
When I live in a revived state – or a state willing to be revived – I change the air, the ground and the world around me.
Isn’t this what Jesus did?
Christ retreated to the mountains to speak to His Father in sweet communion, reviving his soul to return to the lower lands to minister to those needing Truth, Healing and Revival.
He walked among friends and foes for one purpose. To show His Great Love to all, that all might one day leap a top the High Places as if having hinds feet.