Revive to be Alive! Revivals of Jesus’ life giving presence is how we got here and is how Jesus is leading us into the future.
In the first century, the Holy Spirit filled followers of Jesus with the power and good news of all God had done for us and the world. All Jesus had done is ours! This revival brought people together–all shapes, sizes, experiences, back grounds, to share meals, resources, and worship.
In the 1700’s a preacher named John Wesley began a revival in England that would spread around the world. He went outside the walls of the church buildings, preaching in fields, sharing about God’s grace that welcomes and transforms our lives and world. Grateful and excited, people gathered in small groups to share life’s burdens, blessings and belief that Jesus was alive in their lives. These folks had a method for connecting and growing in God’s unconditional and unearned love, so they were called “Methodists.”
In 1767 in Pennsylvania, a revival took place among farmers. A farmer, Phillip Otterbein got up and hugged Martin Boehm who had just told a story of Jesus hearing his cry while plowing the fields. “We are brethren!” These folks, who would become the “Evangelical United Brethren,” led the way in witnessing to an active, caring, and courageous God in the sufferings of America.
In 1968, a revival brought the Methodists together with the Evangelical United Brethren Church to become the United Methodist Church.
In December of 1896, Highland United Methodist Church grew out of a revival meeting held on the first floor of James S. Martin’s mill. Wood from area trees and hands of local men and women put together a church building for fanning the flame of God’s presence in downtown Callaway, Va. For over 100 years this faith community on a “high land” or hill, has hoped to welcome, nurture, and send people out to love God and neighbor. We continue to do so today.
We are all the people from Genesis to the Church Directory that the Holy Spirit works through. What about you? Come, join the revival!