By Festus Ndukwe
Gospel preaching and missions is like farming – tilling the soil to sow seeds. The soil needs to be softened by the rain to be tillable, and the seeds need to be showered by the rain to grow and produce a harvest. It is tasking, rigorous and frustrating to till a soil when there is no rain. This is what happens when there is no revival, when there is no blessing.
As a young missionary, I have witnessed a personal revival but I would refrain from talking about it. It’s like being in the heavens. The difference is between light and darkness. It was revival fire that purged my heart from worldliness and sin, and kindled a fire of consecration in me. Till today! I will leave the details for another day.
Revival settles all Arguments
I have come to know when there is no revival, when there is no fire on the altar and in the Church. There is no time in the history of missions and the Church that we need revival more than now. It is not sinners that need revival. Sinners being dead need awakening. It is this present sleepy, sloppy, and dying Church that needs revival. It is the revival of the Church that provokes the awakening of the dead in sin.
When revival comes, no one needs to beg sinners to repent; sinners will beg you to repent. When revival comes, no one needs to pursue the wicked to return their loot; the wicked will pursue you to return their loot. When revival comes, no one needs to beg this lousy and lukewarm generation of today to go to Church; they will run to Church and will continue to weep for their souls even after the church service has ended. When revival comes, you don’t need to correct people about their worldly lifestyles; weeping, they will carry their worldly items, and in utter disdain, throw them into the gutter.
When revival comes, all these arguments about “I am a Muslim, I can’t be a Christian”, “You are this, you are that,” will end. What would matter would be where one will find peace for his or her soul. When revival comes, club houses, comedy shows and pool centres will close down; police stations and courts will run out of business as there will be no criminals. When revival comes, you don’t need to beg young people to go as missionaries; they will cast the glory of this world into the gutter, and run to serve God on the mission field. It has happened before!
When Revival Came
It was 1906 in Korea. Some missionaries from the Methodist and Presbyterian background, out of frustration, called for the work to stop in different mission stations. They decided to pray for weeks and then months. Then a missionary visited a station and called for a meeting. As he led the congregation in a hymn, something broke. People began to weep. They stood in a line, repenting, confessing and restituting for their sins. The fire spread! Then there was this mission gathering. The preacher made an altar call for those that would want to go as missionaries. Almost all stood up. He had to select; the others protested, saying they too would go to the mission fields. While this was going on, a farmer sold his donkey for farming and sent the proceeds to the mission field.
It will happen again!
“…For waters will break forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert. And the burning sand… will become a pool, and thirsty ground springs of water… Then the lame will leap like a deer and the tongue of the mute will shout for joy… and the eyes of the blind will be opened and the ears of the deaf will be unstopped.” (Isa. 37:6,7,5)
As we pray!
Festus Ndukwe may be reached at email@example.com