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Summary: This sermon is useful when your area is going through a hot, dry period.

We Are Going Through Two Kinds of Drought

Haggai 1:6, 9-11

6.""You have sown much, and bring in little; You eat, but do not have enough; You drink, but you are not filled with drink; You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm; And he who earns wages, Earns wages to put into a bag with holes...

9. You looked for much, but indeed it came to little; and when you brought it home, I blew it away. Why?" says the Lord of hosts. "Because of My house that is in ruins, while every one of you runs to his own house.

10. Therefore the heavens above you withhold the dew, and the earth withholds its fruit.

11. For I called for a drought on the land and the mountains, on the grain and the new wine and the oil, on whatever the ground brings forth, on men and livestock, and on all the labor of your hands."

As we look around us today we see grass

that is no longer soft and green

but brittle and brown.

The green corn stalks are rolling up.

Creeks are drying up.

Wildlife is having a difficult time finding water to drink.

The effects of the drought are very apparent.

We are without a doubt in the middle of a drought.

- A drought is a period of dry weather: a long period of extremely dry weather when there is not enough rain for the successful growing of crops or the replenishment of water supplies.

This is what we are experiencing.

This is what we all can relate to when we talk about a drought,

but what about another type of drought?

I believe we are experiencing a "Spiritual Drought" in America.

The Bible speaks of spiritual drought

that can cause far greater devastation;

a drought of the outpouring of God's power and blessing.

Just as we are currently in the grip of a drought,

the church needs to see its desperate need

for a fresh rainfall from God.

The 2010 Census revealed some startling statistics.

There were 31 churches in Edwards County in 2000.

The 2010 Census shows 26 churches in Edwards County.

That means 5 churches closed their doors in that 10-year period.

The population of Edwards County, Illinois was 6,721 in 2010.

The Census stats show

4,229 Edwards County people belonged to a church.

That was 63% in 2010 which was down from the 74% in 2000.

Of course, we know there's a big difference

between belonging to a church

and actually being a faithful churchgoer.

With only a few exceptions...

Most of the churches in this county are not growing.

Some of those that are growing are increasing their numbers...

Through people who left other churches.

Why is all this happening?

Because Edwards County is in a "Spiritual Drought!"

Point #1. The Churches Need A Fresh Downpour of Rain from God.

Haggai 1:6, 9-11 ""You have sown much, and bring in little; You eat, but do not have enough; You drink, but you are not filled with drink; You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm; And he who earns wages, Earns wages to put into a bag with holes... You looked for much, but indeed it came to little; and when you brought it home, I blew it away. Why?" says the Lord of hosts. "Because of My house that is in ruins, while every one of you runs to his own house. Therefore the heavens above you withhold the dew, and the earth withholds its fruit. For I called for a drought on the land and the mountains, on the grain and the new wine and the oil, on whatever the ground brings forth, on men and livestock, and on all the labor of your hands."

Though this is a description of the people of Israel in 521 B.C....

It also describes our country today.

We have all of the modern conveniences...

Yet people are not satisfied.

We seem to never have enough...

AND CONSTANTLY WANT MORE.

What money we do bring in seems to disappear quickly.

Many people have no savings accounts.

Even though there are some beautiful church buildings...

The truth is that many churches are in ruins.

Attendance is poor!

The worship services are dull and routine!

The preaching is dead sermons, preached by dead preachers!

The singing is pathetic!

The collection plates don't bring in enough to pay expenses.

Unfortunately, many church folks refuse to see their condition.

To have a fresh outpouring of God's power and blessing...

we must see and admit that we have a need.

We need rain when we have drifted into a spiritual drought,

when worship becomes form without substance,

when our secular lives have precedence over our spiritual lives,

when we find ourselves losing battles against temptations!

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