By Andrew Strom.

Recently we published again the facts about the great 1857 Prayer
Revival – and how it began. You will remember that it started with
a huge financial crash in New York – which caused the businessmen
to begin to PRAY. Suddenly the idol of Money was dethroned in
their lives – and God could burst through. That was one of the
greatest Revivals that this country has ever seen.

If you ask an expert about busts and recessions, they may tell
you that these are painful things – but also “useful” in a way. A bust
tends to correct all the excesses and distortions that have occurred
in the boom years – washing them away so that the economy can
begin to grow again from a healthy foundation. The busts can be
just as important as the booms for keeping the economy stable
and robust.

But what has happened in America and other countries in recent
years is that the Fed and the Central Banks have gone to enormous
lengths to avoid a ‘bust’. They have flooded the economy with easy
money every time, in an attempt to avoid a proper ‘correction’. So
the distortions in the economy just get worse and worse. Since
1995 it has been particularly bad. But all of this is just “postponing”
the day of reckoning. -It is simply ensuring that when the bust
does come it will be particularly bad.

By pumping all this easy money into the economy, the result has
been a number of enormous “bubbles”. You may have heard about
the “” bubble that burst in 2000 – almost taking the economy
with it. Now we have the Housing bubble which likewise has
recently burst – and this one really is a whopper. The effects are
only just beginning to take hold.

Of course, at the end of the day, a lot of this is about selfishness
and greed, “consumerism” and idolatry. It is about a whole
generation of Westerners who refuse to let go of their “lifestyle” –
and who are willing to go into enormous debt to keep it up. In fact,
many of them have even been willing to sell their children’s legacy
down the toilet by taking every last drop of equity out of their homes
to spend it on cars and improvements and overseas trips, etc. This
is complete madness. Have you ever heard of a generation that has
done that with their house equity before? -It is called “selling your
future down the river”.

The circus of selfishness and consumerism just goes on and on.
We become little “clones” who exist only to consume. What is
every TV commercial about? -It is about getting you to buy yet
another “thing” that you don’t need. -And our entire culture revolves
around this stuff. We have become the very thing that Paul warned
about – “lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God.”

And so God in His mercy is going to put a stop to the circus. He
is going to cure us of consumerism by the “cold turkey” method –
because we will not listen to His warnings nor heed His commands.
Jesus said, “Do not lay up treasures on this earth”. In fact, He
said, “Sell what you have and give to the poor.” -What part of this
do we not understand?

And so the circus is going to end. -In fact, it already is.

For the first time since the Great Depression, house prices have
now fallen for over a year. In some places they have fallen off a cliff –
and still dropping. For the first time since the Great Depression
our savings rate in America is negative – yes, that’s right – a
negative savings rate. Auto sales are in steep decline and sub-prime
mortgage lenders are going belly-up one after the other. But this
is only the beginning of sorrows. The “bite” of this thing will be
felt in future months. We ain’t seen nothing yet.

One of the few things that has been going up, in the face of all
of this, is the stockmarket. -This happened in the last recession
also – but it cannot continue forever. Unless the Fed finds some
miraculous way to flood the economy with easy money YET
AGAIN, expect it all to come tumbling down. (-This time they
seem to have run out of bullets).

Let me be very clear on this- It will be an absolute MIRACLE if
we do not find ourselves in virtual “depression” conditions sometime
within the next three years. We have never seen anything like that
before in our lifetimes.

So what are we supposed to do about this? If I were a financial
advisor I might tell you to “buy gold” because it usually does well
in troubled times. But I am not – so I am going to tell you the
exact opposite. We need to get RID of the ways our lives revolve
around mammon. And we need to do what those businessmen
did in 1857 – we need to PRAY. We need to REPENT to God on
behalf of our culture – our love of money and our selfish lifestyle.
We need to cry out to Him for MERCY for our land.

There is a reason why God is allowing our economy to go through
this. We have forgotten Him. We have become selfish and lazy.
The reason I believe we are getting this crash is because we
DESPERATELY NEED IT. Otherwise there can be no Revival. True
Awakenings only come to people who are hungry – who are ‘poor in spirit’.

My friends, it is time to pray.

Discuss this issue on the board at-
God bless you all.
-Andrew Strom

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