Bill: Lori, thanks so much for joining us this week. Before we
begin, why don't you tell us a little about yourself?
Lori: Thanks, Bill. I live in the Pacific Northwest where the
beautiful Puget Sound bay wends its way through western
Washington and the Majestic Mt. Rainier fills up the sky on
sunny days. I have four adult sons and 12 grandchildren and
several more that are step siblings or half siblings. I'll take as
many as I can get. They are my greatest joy. I have been born
again since 1979 and I treasure His grace and mercy and love
His word to guide my life. What a privilege to share Him with
others and serve and fellowship in His church.
Bill: That's great! Lori, I've been doing a study lately on the
Laodicean church of Revelation 3 and the likenesses with the
21st-century American church, especially verse 20 where Jesus
is outside the door of the church knocking to be allowed in.
What do you think is necessary for the door to be opened here
again in America?
Lori: They were lukewarm, indifferent to ministry and their
relationship to God, which so repulsed God that He threatened
to vomit them out of His mouth if they did not repent. In some
versions, the words spit and spew are used for vomit.
Regardless, God said He would reject them forcefully with
revulsion. That's heavy. The reason this church was lukewarm
was because they were wealthy and felt they had no need for
God. They lived in a prosperous city of trade and commerce.
Also, they were pressured by Rome to cooperate by being
involved in the Imperial cult which worshiped the Emperor. If they didn't, they would lose their wealth by persecution. That was more important to them so they became apathetic to the Lord and His work.
America is the most powerful, wealthy, and free country on
earth, but our power is waning rapidly, daily, because of gross
pride and defiance toward God thus more incompetent and
The American Church has the freedom to worship without
persecution and the wealth to make things happen on a grand
scale. But these grand cool churches start seeking more money
for more bells and whistles, so they can be cooler and grander
and more popular. Then it becomes all about the people or
church doing these things. That’s not a blanket statement of
course, but it’s pervasive. It has opened the door for many
churches to twist or ignore the Scriptures and do their own
thing. They start making Jesus cooler, therefore that false Jesus
and churches have more fans. There are a lot of preacher
followers,, Christian music followers, false doctrine followers,
and Christ kind of gets demoted, dismissed, or exchanged for a
newer model. We are spoiled and have misplaced focus.
Tragically, thousands of people think they are saved but are not
because they’ve fallen for the cool cultural Jesus and churches.
And yet, Jesus is still here, knocking at the door. It's simple, we
repent and once again be devoted to God. If the Church is
going to avoid being spewed out of the Lord’s mouth, it needs to
Bill: Let's switch gears a bit. I suppose if we are to consider a
corporate revival, we must begin with the individual. When it comes to an individual's walk with Christ, what do think is most necessary for personal revival?
Lori: To know, understand and worship the biblical Jesus and
to rightly divide the word of Truth. We can't compromise. We
need to put Jesus on the throne, and no one else before Him.
"Thou shalt have no other gods before Me." The first
commandment. Personally, we should devote ourselves to God
and walk in truth and purity, and obedience. This applies to
each Christian, but also the Church at large. We need to go to
churches that are biblically sound and put Jesus first.
Bill: We focus a lot here at TGAF on a movement of God upon
a church, a town, even the nation. That would be ideal, but what
are some practical steps an individual believer could take when
Lori: Get back into the Word and prayer, and church. Too many
Christians don't read the bible, they don't study it and church
attendance has sadly dropped considerably. It's easier for
people to watch online in their jammies and hot coffee. I have
seen people post photos of their computer screens (watching
church) and seen through their slippered feet. It's obvious they
are in their recliners rather than a pew. This started with COVID
but the churches have been open for quite a while. The Church
needs each one of us to function, using our gifts. We need the
unity of the Church, the fellowship. We grow together and spur
one another on. To worship together is so special. When we
skip live church (for ease and leisure) it's easy to compromise
and put spiritual things second. I would add consistent daily prayer. The Bible tells us not to forsake the assembling together. Imagine what is going to happen if this trend continues to grow. There will be empty sanctuaries and no ministry. Be a part of the church by serving as well as attending.
Bill: Do you have any advice for those who may be struggling
spiritually at this time?
Lori: Humble yourselves and draw near to God. It's hard
because motivation has stalled and their yearning for God has
waned. David said, "As the Deer pants for the water brook, so
pants my soul after thee;" (Psalm 42:1). We need to pant and
yearn for God. Yearning and panting are desperate calls for
fulfillment and refreshment. You’ll die if you don’t get it. If it's not
in you, then ask God for the desire. Want to want to and pray
accordingly. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. I
need revival too, on a daily basis. But I am always seeking for
God to help me grow in obedience and to forgive me for my
pride. I don't have it all together and am as desperate as
everyone else. It seems to me that the older I get in my
Christian walk, the more aware I am of my sin and hate that it's
there. But I practice 1 John 1:9 (confessing my sin when I'm
aware of it) and stand on His promise that He is faithful and just
to forgive me (and us) and cleanse me from all
unrighteousness. His mercies are new every morning and we
need them every morning because Satan is still walking to and
fro seeking whom he may devour. He still roams in my life. We
have to put on and keep on the armor of God.
Bill: Lori, there is a sign on the Niagara River just above Niagara
Falls which says, "Point of No Return." Once someone passes that warning sign, they will no doubt be carried over the Falls. God has sent us many warnings. This is purely speculative, but do you think America has slipped past the point of no return? Is there still hope?
Lori: That's a tough question, Bill. We are no doubt in the last
days and every day more hell breaks loose as the bible tells us
it will. The labor pains are growing stronger and getting closer
together. Christians are now busier fighting in the political
boxing ring than following and seeking after God, generally
speaking. As citizens, it's extremely important that we advocate
for change in our nation, to vote and speak out and influence for
change, to run for office, but as God leads in His way. It's
biblical. Joseph and Daniel were influencers in national change
even in foreign lands. There were other kings and leaders who
made reforms and influenced the people and Israel to turn back
to God. But we are more so citizens of heaven, so we need to
realize our central purpose is to trust God and spread the
gospel. A new president and elected officials, no matter how
good they are will not change a sinful nation or draw our
neighbors to God. It is often said we cannot legislate the human
heart to love God. We might obey any new and good laws
because we have to, but laws don't change the heart. We will
get corrupt again without changed hearts. We must tell the
world about Jesus and live the example.
In the bible, there was always a remnant and there is a remnant
of caring devoted, faithful Christians today. With Christ, there is
always hope, but all great empires come to an end because of
sin and pride. America is going to flame out because of its pride and ever-growing debased behavior. My personal opinion is that if the Church and our nation don't repent, America is going to fall. But at least if the Church is revived, whatever happens to our nation, the Kingdom of God will continue to grow.
Bill: Well, Lori, I want to thank you for your thoughts and
wisdom. Thank you as well for being willing to share them with
us. As we wrap things up, are there any last thoughts you'd like
to leave with our readers?
Lori: Let's repent, turn back to God. Seek first the kingdom of God, spread the gospel, and be pure.
Bill: Thanks again for taking time out of your busy schedule to
discuss these things with us today. I appreciate you and your
ministry and will be praying for you.
Lori: Thank you, Bill. I am praying along with you.