Summary: God wants to do a new thing in your life, but first you must break up that fallow ground.
“Break It Up”
“Tearing up the fallow ground in your life”
District Elder Melvin L. Maughmer, Jr
Whenever I begin to tell the story of when I was hit by a car at the age of 12 while riding my bike to school, my wife will either finish the story for me or she will say something like O.K. that’s 1 million and 5 times now. She says she has heard that story more times than not and I need to find another story to tell in order to make a point. The thing that I have come to realize about this story and my telling of the story is at the time I am telling the story in my mind I am literally living in the past. I am trying to hold on to a former experience in my life and I am seeking to receive the same sympathy, understanding, and pity I received nearly 30 years ago.
A few years ago there was a show on television that I like called “Married with Children”. On the show the father, named Al Bundy was a ladies shoe salesman. He always felt as though life had dealt him a bad hand. However, for those that remember the show will remember that Al went to Polk High School and played football. During one game he scored 4 touchdowns. Everyone knew the story and dreaded when he told it, but he would begin to smile and gloat and feel good trying to hold on to some former glory.
Just like Al Bundy in the show, when I tell the story of when I got hit by the car in my mind as I am telling the story I am literally stuck on Friday September 12, 1977. I am in my mind expecting the same understanding, the same sympathy, and the same experiences I received on that day, but the truth is life has moved on some almost 30 years, but I’m trying to hold on to yesterday.
Sadly the church is oftentimes this very way. They say stuff like I remember when the church use to be full. I remember when during service someone from off the street would walk in strung out on drugs and alcohol and possessed with demons, but the saints would began to pray and those demons would have to flee. Then there are the ones with this testimony 20 years ago God brought me out of sin, I remember it just like it was yesterday.
ILLUSTRATION: God brought them out of sin 20 years ago, but they have not moved from that very point in the past 20 years. Life and the Body of Christ has moved on yet instill they are standing there holding on to some former glory. God is saying I want to do a new thing in you, I want to take you to another level, I know the thoughts I have for you, thoughts of good and not of evil to bring you to an expected end, but you need to tear up that fallow ground in your life.
WATCH THIS: They are still trying to hold on to a former experience, they are trying to retain some former glory. The fact of the matter is they are stuck in place. This place is a place where we as an individual or as a church should not be. It is a scary place, it is a desolate place, it is a lonely place, and it is the place of mediocrity and complacency.
What am I saying: Once we have experienced a level of success, once we have seen the hand of God at work, once that thing that we have been praying for comes to fruition we become like the rich fool in Luke 12:16-19 “And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully: 17 and he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? 18 And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry” He had gotten to a place of complacency and mediocrity and he didn’t want to be bothered or disrupted any more. This is how the church is getting, we’ve experienced a level of success, we’ve seen God work now all we want to do is sit back, kick off our shouting shoes, sing a few songs, hear a short and sweet message, say a quick prayer and just be comfortable. We really don’t want God to move because that will disrupt our level of complacency. We have experienced God, but now we have placed a Do Not Disturb sign over the door knob of our hearts. We don’t pray like we use to pray, we don’t fast like we use to fast, we don’t move like we use to move, we don’t love like we use to love O ZION what’s the matter now. We have become stuck and comfortable with where we are, spiritually, physically, emotionally, and mentally, we say I’m on my way to heaven and I’m so glad, but God is saying I want to do a new thing, there’s more I have for you then just to bring you to heaven, but you must tear up that fallow ground in your life. BREAK IT UP.