"Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you." Ephesians 5:14 (ESV)
There are many places in scripture where God gives a directive to His people. Sometimes these directives are a simple one word and sometimes there are layers. In this season God is calling His body, the church to Awake. It would seem like this would be such an easy thing for us to do, just wake up. What could be so difficult about that?
I would argue that we must first acknowledge that we are sleeping and we must love God more than we love the comfort that sleep brings. It can be so easy to be lulled to sleep by mundane works, words and service. To become less and less enamored with the person of Jesus and more focused on maintaining an orderly Sunday service. Have you ever been doing something at home, maybe watching tv and suddenly realize that somewhere along the way you had drifted off to sleep? The worst part about it is that most times we do not realize we are sleeping until we are awaken and then we have to take inventory and look around to figure out just how long we were sleeping.
God is saying wake up! Awake! Awake church, awake (insert your name), awake California. How long have we been on the couch sleeping? Do we even know? Do we know at what point we drifted? The best part is that the promise of God awaits us on the other side of our slumber. God beckons, He is shaking us because He wants to shine on us.
The word of God is living and active, and the kingdom of God is at hand. God’s glory is meant to shine in and through us, through our lives. As we wipe the sleep out of our eyes, the God of the universe shines on us. His promises are sure. The world needs to see Christ shining and its up to us, the people of God to know Him and make Him known. How else will the world receive Him but by those He sends? That is us, you and me. He is calling for us to walk in the light of His glory. The grace and the love of God compels us to wake up. There is a world who needs us to display who He is, God is waiting and so is the earth. Awake, O sleeper.
Thank you Lord for your grace to come to us, to not allow us to remain in a death sleep. Thank you for the privilege to partner with you in bringing your glory to the world. Thank you for caring enough about us to come to us and continually offer the opportunity for Christ to shine on us. We say yes Lord, we wake up. Wedo not know exactly where we dosed off but we return to you and want to be the people you have created us to be in the earth. We obey your command and we pray on behalf of California and declare that California is waking up and that Christ will shine on and through California. In Jesus’ name. Amen.