On October 9th Canadians will celebrate Thanksgiving. Cherries, peaches, blueberries, melons, apples, corn, tomatoes…an abundance of grains, fruits and vegetables. The harvest is plentiful. The produce is sweet, and we are thankful. Heavy rains and wet soil made farmers and market gardeners anxious early in the season. They cultivated and planted when they could, cared for the trees in their orchards and plants in the fields and we are enjoying the harvest.
The natural harvest provides life for mankind. Even more important is the spiritual harvest. The natural one is temporal. The spiritual one is eternal! The Word of God is incorruptible seed. (I Peter 1:23) If we will sow it in people’s hearts, water it with prayer, cultivate it with teaching, and reap it reaching out in love to those who are searching, that seed, that Word, will not fail to produce.
Neither harvest happens without effort. If no one picks the fruit, it will rot on the trees and fall to the ground. The grain cannot be left standing in the field. It does not transfer automatically to the granary. Hay is bailed and stored in some way so the weather cannot spoil it. Even the lone orange pepper that survived whatever attacked my plants won’t make it into a salad unless I pick it.
Whether we come alongside others to stand with them until their need is met or we are expecting to see a promise fulfilled in our own lives, after the sowing and watering and nurturing of our faith, we do need to take. Receiving involves a positive, aggressive response to the Word. It’s time. Hebrews 11:1 tells us the time to move in faith is now. As we participate in the reaping we can celebrate the harvest.