Last week at Revive Indiana, Kyle Martin broke down and asked over and over again. "If you know it's important to tell people about Jesus, why don't you just do it?" His words pierced through me and I knew the Holy Spirit was speaking directly to me.
When Revive Indiana first came here, I was very much on board. I went out with groups three times (I knew the exact number because I was proud of it). But in those outings, there was always a sense of fear about having an encounter and relief when I didn't need to engage with those who don't know Christ. In my first outing, the encounter was with someone who had said yes to Jesus but had significant physical needs. So I got to do acts of service for her. That I knew how to do. In the second outing, we only met up with a conservative Mennonite who owned a business. We prayed for his business. That I knew how to do. In the third outing, my disobedience kicked in. I saw a man looking at some used books in a store. I felt the Holy Spirit prompting me to talk with him. I said a few words but I never pushed further to continue the conversation. And I put him out of my mind and told no one about him.
Then I stopped going out with groups over the next several weeks. I thought I always had really good reasons, but the bottom line is that I didn't do it because I didn't want to. So I stayed busy with critique. As an Anabaptist, I was sure I had some things to offer to help keep everything in line. I believed that we (Mennonites and Amish) were needed in this revival because we were the ones that knew how to suffer and abandon all for the sake of the Gospel. We were the ones with the rich heritage from the Reformation in which we suffered through tongue screws and drownings and fire. But that little thing of opening my mouth with an unbeliever? I wouldn't do it. And nobody had to put in the tongue screw.
I challenged other Mennonites to show up at Revive Indiana, while I showed up with my physical presence only. I told people that going out with teams during the day is where the revival is really at. But I didn't join any teams.
In forty years, few will remember who won sectionals in northern Indiana. But I do believe that in forty years people will remember the revival that started in Indiana in 2015. Will you look back with regret or be grateful you had the opportunity to participate? This is not about working hard, it's about showing up and finding the flow of the Holy Spirit. There's a week and a half left, come and see what it is. Enter into what God is doing.
-John M Troyer