The Calvary Road

Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me” (Matthew 16:24, ESV).

I read a book in the 1970s that I have never forgotten. It was titled The Calvary Road by Roy Hession.

The opening paragraph rearranged my understanding of the gospel …

Revival is just the life of the Lord Jesus poured into human hearts. Jesus is always victorious. In heaven, they are praising Him all the time for His victory.

I became a Christian during a revival in the 1970s as 10 to 12 million young people spontaneously accepted Jesus all over the United States. I was part of that revival. I led hundreds to Jesus. I would pray with them, encourage them to get baptized, and then start a discipling process.

That was revival or salvation to me – to get others saved.

Then I read Hession’s book. 

He taught me that true revival is only as deep as Jesus reaches into my soul. Most revivals end in disarray, too many megachurches display fallen leaders, and many followers of Jesus get discouraged and walk away from faithfulness.

Roy Hession says …

Whatever may be our experience of failure and barrenness, He is never defeated. His power is boundless. We, on our part, only have to get into a right relationship with Him, and we shall see His power being demonstrated in our hearts and lives and service, and His victorious life will fill us and overflow through us to others. And that is revival in its essence.

Jesus teaches us to follow Him. We must deny ourselves and pick up our cross. This is the point of Roy Hession’s title of The Calvary Road.

To be broken is the beginning of revival. It is painful, and it is humiliating, but it is the only way. It is saying, “It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me” (Galatians 2:20).

Many followers of Jesus claim “brokenness” – a sort of badge of honor. It isn’t. Brokenness happens to us, and it is painful, often humiliating, and not God’s ultimate destination for His children.  

When someone tells me that they are broken, I’m skeptical, as I am with a person who says, “I’m becoming humble.”  If I’m broken or humble, I don’t notice brokenness or humility. Instead, I see my pride.

Following Jesus will break us.

Being broken is both God’s work and ours. He brings His pressure to bear, but we have to make the choice … It is then that we can stiffen our necks and refuse to repent, or we can bow the head and say, “Yes, Lord.” Brokenness in daily experience is simply the response of humility to the conviction of God.

I must confess, I don’t break easily. I resist, I’m stubborn, and I grasp my desires tightly. I’m always trying to walk with Jesus as His advisor, “Uh, Jesus, should You do this or answer this prayer?”

For this reason, we are not likely to be broken except at the cross of Jesus. The willingness of Jesus to be broken for us is the all-compelling motive in our being broken as well.

While brokenness is our path, it is not the destination. God will give us victory.

Brokenness is the beginning of revival. Revival is being absolutely filled to overflowing with the Spirit, and this is victorious living … All we have to do is present our empty, broken self and let Him fill keep filling us.

Thanks, Roy Hession, for sharing your teaching on revival, brokenness, and fulness in this Interruption. 

As Hession concludes … 

Let’s go to Calvary every day for constant cleansing and overflowing.

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