While Ezra was praying and confessing, weeping and throwing himself down before the house of God, a large crowd of Israelites—men, women and children—gathered around him. They too wept bitterly. -Ezra 10:1
The final chapter of Ezra was not one of joy, but of mourning. Ezra and many others wept before the Lord over the sins of their nation. This mourning led to social change, which led to spiritual awakening.
It’s interesting to note that in the history of America’s Great Awakenings, each one was closely connected with social change. The first Great Awakening occurred shortly before the American Revolution. The second Great Awakening was closely connected with the abolitionist movement and improved women’s rights. The third Great Awakening took place near the time of the Civil War and included what as then called the Social Gospel that addressed both spiritual and physical needs in the name of Christ. Among these leaders was D.L. Moody, whose heart for evangelism and helping those in need changed many lives and continues today through groups such as the YMCA and Moody Bible Institute.
Most would agree our culture stands in need of change. If we wish to see change and be the change, it begins in prayer and repentance. The shifts that need to take place are only available through the power of God. May we seek his help in our lives and our culture today.
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Dillon Burroughs is the author and coauthor of numerous books and is handwriting a copy of all 31,173 verses of the Bible at HolyWritProject.com. Find out more about Dillon at Facebook.com/readdB or readdB.com.