Pastor Roger Canary has diligently and fervently prayed for revival in Reno for 25 years. Anyone who is familiar with him is fully aware of his life of prayer. He built his congregation on prayer. He provokes his church to pray in 4 prayer meetings a week!
He had heard that we had moved our Ministry to Reno. The reports of Branson and other outbreaks in our Living Proof Crusades got back to him. We had a mutual friend in Pastor Raymond Larson and God used Raymond to introduce us.
At lunch, Pastor Canary was humble but straightforward. Both of our hearts burned with a passion to see true revival overtake America. He was finished with arrogant evangelists. I told him that I was finished with arrogant pastors. We became instant friends.
Since we are in Reno—if you’ll forgive the analogy—we laid all of our cards on the table. He doesn’t want a regular meeting in his church. I don’t have time for regular meetings. We needed to be sure that God was in this.
I explained that we prefer neutral buildings not churches. He explained that we could jam up to one thousand people if necessary in his building. He wanted his building to be a neutral site for an outpouring of the Holy Spirit. He went on to say that he would actively involve other pastors.
We concluded our lunch and went to prayer. I received a green light to conduct a Living Proof Crusade in his building. I felt heroic when I told him. He brought me down to earth by—with a wonderful audacity—insisting that I should not preach in his pulpit until I came to the Sunday 9 AM prayer meeting…which I did!
Then the great challenge of this meeting began to weigh on me. In Nevada only 5% go to church. Because of our tight schedule we had one weekend open—a weekend with a double whammy: Valentine’s Day and President’s day. Then I thought about Elijah on Mount Carmel.
Elijah poured thousands of gallons of water on the sacrifice to remove all doubt that it was God who sent the fire. The same applied to this meeting. Many things drenched this upcoming event. God was to remove all doubt that He and He alone would make it work and be glorified.
The opening night atmosphere is a mixture of excitement and hesitancy. The army of God is ready but their guests—typical Nevadans—are reserving judgment. Their reservations didn’t survive for long.
I preached an unapologetic call for people to come to Christ. The Holy Spirit eviscerated atheism, Islam, addictions and all the poisoned lies of today. Conviction replaced complacency. Before any of us knew it, 50 people charged to the front to surrender to Christ…since then that number has tripled!
An explosive shout of praise filled the house as loved ones found eternal life. And the night was still young.
Holy Spirit intensified His work in the people. Healings came faster than I could call them out. A river of life was roaring through the desert. People saw their crutches, and canes become souvenirs. People on breathing apparatus didn’t need them anymore. Shouts of joy rose like fireworks everywhere.
As I write you we are only two hours away from the “final service.” Most are convinced that this cannot possibly be the last service. This is our new normal. Fires are breaking out wherever we go. We are in the glorious place where we do not know what to do.
Branson and other cities are still flaming forward. We also know that our World Convention is going to be an epic outpouring. This does not include so many other cities are waiting for us to get to them. How on Earth do we process all of this?
There is only one thing I know tonight: The ground is rumbling in Reno. 25 years of waiting was over.