In the classic Jimmy Stewart movie, The Flight of the Phoenix, a plane flies into a sandstorm and crashes in the desert, stranding a dozen or so passengers with little water and less options for rescue. Ultimately, they must rescue themselves by constructing a smaller plane from the least damaged parts of their damaged plane. Before they do, a few men take off across the desert to find help. They take only a small flask of water and no food. When they return, they are dying of dehydration.
I often find myself in a place where I have flown into a storm, crashed, and lost faith in my Savior. I take off on my own, determined that I can rescue myself, lead myself out of trouble. Soon, though, I return, dying of thirst, and begging for the Lord’s help.
I am reminded, note of Ezekiel in the Valley of Dry Bones, a passage that has been used for time eternal by evangelists preaching revival. I never tire of hearing this story, and never tire of praying it. Lord, bring these dry, brittle bones back to life. Revive me, dear Lord.
The hand of the Lord came upon me and brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord, and set me down in the midst of the valley; and it was full of bones. Then He caused me to pass by them all around, and behold, there were very many in the open valley; and indeed they were very dry. And He said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?”
So I answered, “O Lord God, You know.”
Again He said to me, “Prophesy to these bones, and say to them, ‘O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! Thus says the Lord God to these bones: “Surely I will cause breath to enter into you, and you shall live. I will put sinews on you and bring flesh upon you, cover you with skin and put breath in you; and you shall live. Then you shall know that I am the Lord.” ’ ”
So I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and suddenly a rattling; and the bones came together, bone to bone. Indeed, as I looked, the sinews and the flesh came upon them, and the skin covered them over; but there was no breath in them.
Also He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.” ’ ” So I prophesied as He commanded me, and breath came into them, and they lived, and stood upon their feet, an exceedingly great army.
Then He said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They indeed say, ‘Our bones are dry, our hope is lost, and we ourselves are cut off!’ Therefore prophesy and say to them, “Thus says the Lord God: ‘Behold, O My people, I will open your graves and cause you to come up from your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. Then you shall know that I am the Lord, when I have opened your graves, O My people, and brought you up from your graves. I will put My Spirit in you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I, the Lord, have spoken it and performed it,” says the Lord.’ ”