We sing the song and it says, “Do you really want revival?” There’s another song, one of my favorites, “Revive Us Again,” fill each heart with thy love. But I wonder, do we genuinely mean that? Do we really want revival? I’m afraid sometimes we don’t really, genuinely desire revival. We want the fruit or the benefits that we believe revival brings to us. I wonder, do you really want revival? If it means a cutting, a conviction, a repentance, a leaving off of things, a turning, and a moving closer to God, forsaking this world, do you really want revival?
Well, if you do, there’s a Bible verse that I believe describes the process and it does it perfectly. It’s in the Old Testament and it gives us a great illustration of a reviving work in our heart. In Hosea chapter number 10 and verse 12, here’s what the Bible says: “Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy. Break up your fallow ground, for it is time to seek the Lord till he come and rain righteousness upon you.”
Here, the prophet Hosea is using the illustration and he goes into the realm of agriculture and he talks about a field that is being prepared to produce fruit. It’s a field that is fallow. A fallow field is a field that has been left unattended for some time. And because of that, it’s gotten hard, it’s filled with trash, and it’s not profitable. It cannot bring forth new fruit. Now, it used to produce, but it’s not producing now. The need is breaking up. There must be a plow put to the field. That plow comes in and it’s difficult labor. But that plow begins to violently uproot and turn over that soil. It begins to loosen up the hardness and break up that which is solid. It gets the trash out of the way. And that plow will go and turn over and then break up and turn over and break up that once hardened ground. It would be useless to sow seed on fallow ground. So it has to be broken up. So you break up that fallow ground, then you can sow the seed. And that which used to be useless is useful, unproductive, it produces because it’s been broken up.
That’s a good picture of repentance, of contrition, of conviction, of the work of the Holy Ghost. When we allow God to speak to our heart about the hardness of it, we’re willing to let him do his surgery on our heart, if you will, and to prepare us so that he can sow new seed into our life and we can produce new fruit.
Revival is more than a pep rally. It is more than shouting and swinging from chandeliers. It is more than enthusiasm for Jesus. I am talking about a brokenness, an altar. The Old Testament talks about repentance and sackcloth and ashes, being sorry for our sin, having a desire for holiness, breaking up our fallow ground and sowing in righteousness. Revival is a conviction that brings a confession, that brings a cleansing, and then clears a path for God to work.
I pray we want it. I need it. So do you. I believe and I hope this has been a help in your Christian life today. Let’s pray for revival.