It's Harvest Time (2007)
Yesterday I took my morning walk through the neighborhood. As I headed back up the last hill to my house and walked through the gate, I noticed the small vineyard on my right was overdue for picking. The grapes were here when the property was purchased – the benefit of someone else’s labor. The vines were loaded with fruit, probably due to the abundant rain this past winter. The birds were having a feast! It was now October and the grapes were ready to pick in September.
I remember the month as only a blur of activities. No time for harvesting the grapes and making jam. It made me sad to see the fruit there on the vines. The plants had done their jobs, but there was no one to bring in the harvest. Busyness stole away the time and energy.
I thought of the spiritual application of this situation. In Matt. 9: 37 Jesus is talking to his disciples about a different kind of harvest. He saw the multitudes around him ready to be gathered up and brought into his kingdom and he said, “The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few;”
The rotting grapes in my little vineyard are insignificant compared to the fruit the “Lord of the harvest” has planted and watered in the hearts of those who need to be harvested into His kingdom. When the fruit is ready, that is the time it must be picked! Let us not leave the fruit to spoil on the vine because the workers are too busy with other things. “Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest.” (Matt. 9: 38) Then let us pick up the empty baskets and be ready to go! I’m pretty sure it will be us whom He sends!
It is October – again! Why am I always so surprised when it comes around again, after all, it happens at the same time every year. I guess what surprises me is how fast it gets here. Can the days really be passing that quickly? I am happy to say that this year all (or most) of the grapes were picked and used (thanks to a friend). The birds did get a few, but only the ones stolen before they were ripe enough to pick. Sorry birds, you’ll just have to eat at the bird feeder instead!
I hope I am busier this year with the other harvest, the one I mentioned above – the Lord’s. I hope I am spending more time in prayer for the lost and sharing the good news of Jesus Christ with those who don’t know him. That is one of the reasons I started this blog. Along with encouraging my fellow sisters (and any brothers who happen by), I want to share my faith in the One who is the Lord of the harvest and point those who are lost in the direction of the kingdom of heaven. Two years have passed since I wrote the devotion above; what have I done in those two years? Is my basket getting fuller?
People come into my life each year, just like the grapes come. I pass in and out of the vines of those lives as a worker under the authority of the Lord of the Harvest. Have I tended the vineyard faithfully or have I missed some of the grapes, or left them for the birds? When that final day comes, and I sit my baskets down, what will He say of me? Was I a good worker? I pray the baskets of my life will be overflowing with good fruit from the vineyard He assigned for me to tend.
How about you…what will be in your basket?
This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.