“Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest” Luke 10:2
As we have been discussing, at our little church we recently did that thing we call, “Revival.” We do it every year; one year when the Holy Spirit seized us mightily, we did it TWICE in on year! We usually do it for 5 nights, but that year we did it twice, we only had it 3 nights on the second go around. I guess the Spirit was on a sabbatical or something. I’m not being sarcastic; really I promise I am not!
Of course, I am. We have, historically, “had Revival.” Meaning we have met for 3-5 days, heard a guy preach and exhort, then gone back to doing what we do. To my knowledge, we have never had a revival, in the sense that long-term change was produced among us. That is sad but is simply the truth.
I think some would like to see a change; I think quite a few actually would like to see a renewed working of the Holy Spirit so that we would see real change in our assembly, our families and our communities. Our pastor certainly wants to see this, and a few of the more steadfast among the body is willing to jump in with him. So, he made a real commitment this year to do more than just “having Revival.” He laid some groundwork, along with the preacher who was to be our Revival Speaker, to help us prepare our hearts and minds for this in advance.
One of the first things had to do with me personally. The Pastor came to me about 3 weeks out and asked me to bring the message on Wednesday night two weeks out from Revival. Using the word he used was unusual. Normally, if he won’t be there, he says something like “give a devotional.” Oh, that’s the other thing; he was NOT going to be absent. He was going to be there just like normal on a Wednesday night. Then, he said something like this, “You can talk about whatever you want; Revival would be good, but whatever you want.” He said he would open things up as normal, then turn it over to me for what he termed “A Message from the Pews.”
This is a strange occurrence. The truth is, preachers, love to preach and rarely give up the chance to preach. Also, ours only has a fill in when he will be absent. Normally, one of our Deacons fills in that case. I finally got it in my head what was going on. I had been pestering him about Revival forever, and why we never seem to change afterward. I think he just got tired of me yacking at him and figured I could just tell everybody! I seriously think that, as he tires sometimes of saying the same things to the same crew with nothing changing that a different voice would maybe help.
So, we hatched a plan and waited. I had to let a couple of people in on it; my wife and a friend knew because I picked them to sing a special song for us(that was almost insanity for us on a Wednesday night, because we NEVER have special music on Wednesday night!) They sang the song, “My House is Full, But my Field is Empty,” which would later become part of the evening message. Also, normally on Wednesday, it’s jeans and boots for me. When I showed up in slacks and a collared shirt, some seemed to wonder what was up.
At any rate, everything went off fine and dandy. God’s like that isn’t He? Here are the points I covered for this message, and over the next few days, I will break them down a bit.