09 Jan A Call to Consecration
We usually begin each New Year with 40-days of fasting and prayer. In early December, while I (Melissa) was seeking the Lord about our upcoming fast, the opening lyrics of an old hymn suddenly sprung up from within my spirit.
Take my life and let it be
Consecrated Lord to thee…
Over and over again, the words of that song flowed from within me, becoming my prayer of repentance and surrender.
I then heard the Lord speak the instruction given to His people Israel just before crossing over the Jordan River—during the season of harvest according to Joshua 3:15—to possess their inheritance: “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do wonders among you.” (Joshua 3:5)
In fact, each time God desired to release a mighty move of His Spirit among His people, He spoke to their leadership, giving this one same instruction: “consecrate” or “sanctify yourselves.” (Joel 2:15-17, 2 Chronicles 29:5, 35:6) I sensed this invitation was not for me alone. The Lord was asking me, as He did with Joshua and others, to release a corporate call to consecration as we cross over into this New Year of power and great harvest.
Confirming The Call to Consecration
Just days after receiving this personal word and public assignment, a prophet came seeking to meet with us to deliver a word from the Lord. He began to share a vision the Lord had given him of a great wave of revival, glory and reformation. “The big one’s coming! The big one’s coming!” he said repeatedly, “And I see you riding the crest of that wave! Just like a surfer out in the ocean, watching and waiting to catch the big one, you are to keep your eyes on the big one! Burn the midnight oil! Roll up your sleeves for spiritual things! Study past revivals to prepare for the big one that’s coming.”
Around the same time, I was contacted by my dear friend, Dehavilland Ford, who leads a ministry called The Sign 818. Their mandate is for racial reconciliation and raising up an Isaiah 8:18 generation: “Behold, I and the children whom the LORD has given me are for signs and wonders…” Dehavilland shared a dream given to one of her ministry leaders where, I (Melissa) called them and began shouting through the phone with urgency, “818, meet me in the secret place!”
We later learned that Joshua 3 is the very same passage of scripture William J. Seymour used to call people into a life of consecration and holiness, resulting in the Azuza Street Revival! This historic birthing of the Pentecostal movement radically changed the religious landscape and became the most vibrant force for world evangelization in the 20th century.
The Azuza Street Revival was also unique in that African Americans, Latinos, whites and others prayed and worshiped together, creating a dimension of spiritual unity and equality almost unprecedented at that time. Seeing the sin of racial prejudice removed by the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit, intercessor Frank Bartleman exclaimed, “The color line was washed away in the blood!”
The Lord is announcing His wave of revival and glory, coming with miraculous signs, wonders and a harvest greater than any we’ve yet seen. Spiritual unity stands at it’s core. The Lord desires that we walk in the fullness of all He’s destined for us. He’s calling us to meet Him in the secret place of intimacy so we’ll be ready to ride His wave.
Keys to Consecration
In Joshua 3:1-6 (NASB), we find a few keys for consecrating ourselves and crossing over into our inheritance.
“Then Joshua rose early in the morning; and he and all the sons of Israel set out from Shittim and came to the Jordan, and they lodged there before they crossed. At the end of three days the officers went through the midst of the camp; and they commanded the people, saying, “When you see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God with the Levitical priests carrying it, then you shall set out from your place and go after it. However, there shall be between you and it a distance of about 2,000 cubits by measure. Do not come near it, that you may know the way by which you shall go, for you have not passed this way before.
Then Joshua said to the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do wonders among you.” And Joshua spoke to the priests, saying, “Take up the ark of the covenant and cross over ahead of the people.” So they took up the ark of the covenant and went ahead of the people.”
- The covenant must go first. The Hebrew word for consecration, qadash, is a relational term that means to set yourself apart unto God. It comes from qodesh, the root word for holiness. Isn’t it wonderful to know that holiness is not achieved by our own strength or striving? Jesus’ finished work on the Cross and the New Covenant He established made a way for us to draw near to God. As we do, He draws near to us and imparts of His holiness. What we separate ourselves from is the fruit of what, or rather, Whom we separate ourselves unto. (Numbers 6:8)
- Make room for His presence. The ark of the covenant served as the place for the presence of God. In this season, spend more time in His presence. As we fix our gaze on the beauty of Jesus, all else pales in comparison. The more you behold Him, the more you become like Him. That’s where the beautiful exchange between our sin and pain, and His wholeness and holiness takes place.
- God desires to do a new thing. The Lord cautioned His people saying, “you have not passed this way before.” Along this journey of consecration, make space for God to move and lead you as He desires. The Lord may speak to you differently and manifest His love and power in new ways. He’ll ask you to take risks and do things you’ve never done before. If you’re yielded to Him, Holy Spirit will guide you on the path to possessing your inheritance. (Isaiah 30:21)
Whether you are new in the Lord or have walked with Him for many years, there are greater depths of consecration God is inviting us into. It’s time to burn the midnight oil and roll up our sleeves for spiritual things! “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow, the Lord will do wonders among you!”