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Archive for August, 2008

Fire in the Hole

Much has been said about the Welsh Revival in 1904. It was one of the most unusual moves of God, and it turned the whole idea of church upside down.

It’s funny that we call these moves of God “revivals”. The incredible supernatural moves of God that we have seen over the centuries are never revivals – you can’t revive a dead body. They have always been revolutions – revolutions against the established church and revolutions against human efforts.

Man has a way of organizing things to fit a traditional set of rules. We like rules. I guess it’s easier for us to follow. We construct a box to put our religious concepts into, tie a ribbon on it, and call it Church. Things we can figure out make sense to us, and things that do not fit into those organized processes do not.

It seems God doesn’t like boxes. It’s too hard for Him to fit in them. So to show mankind the sovereignty of His ways, He has a tendency to bust up those boxes.

That’s the way the Welsh Revival started.

Over and over again, we have seen that these great moves of God are preceded with long periods of intense prayer. The desperation grows like a balloon getting blown up. And then, suddenly, someone will stand up and give a testimony or something seemingly innocuous like that, and Bang! The revival takes off like a galloping racehorse and you can’t stop it, breaking all traditional ways of doing things.

In Wales, it was a girl who stood up to say that she loved Jesus with all her heart. And the fire fell from Heaven. And kept burning. And burning.

Prayer meetings sprung up everywhere – and not your usual 30 minute polite prayers, but strong, intense all-night battles in prayer. The entire population of Wales was under Holy Ghost conviction, and so many people were getting saved that there was no place to put everyone.

Liquor stores and pubs closed down, entire police forces had nothing to do anymore. Even the horses would no longer pull the coal carts into the mines because they were no longer hearing the rough cursing from the miners. Everything shut down.

Church no longer fit in the box.

It’s been a hundred years since the Welsh Revival. We’ve seen similar moves since then, and all of them fit that same formula, but it’s been a while since there has been that kind of a incredible, overpowering, revolutionary move of God. But there is one more coming.

Once again, it will not happen as we expect, neither will it spring up out of the established churches. It will defy the scholastic analyzations that flood our Christian Bookstores. God just won’t do it our way. He’s going to do it His way.

Like watching a balloon being blown up, I can see the desperation growing in a place most sophisticated Christians would not expect – Africa. The hunger there is so intense that they will pay any price, overcome any obstacle, and reach to any depth to see God move. There is no plumbing the depth of their desire – it is insatiable. They are desperate for God in a way that we once were just before revivals broke out in America, in Wales, and in every other place where we have seen God move.

The balloon is growing. As it stretches to a point of bursting, someone, somewhere, will stand up to give a testimony – “I love Jesus with all my heart” – and it will explode. The fire will ignite churches across Africa and it will burn so hot that we will feel the heat around the world.

Out of that fire will come forth a new kind of Christian. They won’t be like what you see in your pews. They won’t look like what Christians are supposed to look like, they won’t sound like them, and they won’t act like them. The usual sedate manners that today’s churches boast will be thrown aside in their zeal to proclaim the power of God unto Salvation. They will burn with a fire from off the Altar of God that will consume everything in it’s path.

You may not like them, but they won’t care. They are Joel’s Army. And they are coming.

And the LORD shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great:” Joel 2:11

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