Lord of the Harvest
TAKE 2 minutes FOR TRAINING
Have you ever been discouraged by your outreach venues’ perceived lack of response to the gospel? If you have, you’re not alone. When we started our Salvation Army outreach approximately nine years ago I learned very quickly that perception doesn’t always equal reality. Our initial, enthusiastic ten-man team quickly dwindled to four or five committed men. The reason, primarily, because many team members had an unrealistic expectation regarding their outreach audience’s response to the gospel.
As I contemplated this dilemma, I sensed the recurring prompting to consider Jesus’ words comparing an agricultural field with a spiritual field and our expected response to that truth. Jesus commands us to work in the field faithfully and obediently; cultivating and nurturing because the fields are ripe for harvest. Jesus offers us, His labourers, no specific timeline for the harvest. Nor does he promise to reveal to us the result of our influence or of the precise time of His harvest’s bounty. He only tells us to show up, work the field, and leave the harvest details to the Lord of the harvest.
Although we assume we are entitled, many of us may never know the measure of our enduring influence. Perhaps it’s to reinforce our resolve, to keep us humble, or to reiterate through experience that apart from Him we can do nothing. He alone reconciles the human heart.
Remember, perception doesn’t always equal reality. Don’t be discouraged by the perceived lack of fruit in your outreach venue. Don’t try to collect the fruit prematurely; before it’s ripe for harvest. Unrealistic expectations only discourage our resolve and allow the enemy to exploit further disillusionment and ultimate disengagement.
Faithfully and obediently persevere; stay the course. Faithfully tend your respective outreach field. Pray the Lord of the harvest for fellow labourers; pray He will continue to use you to nurture and cultivate His field. And pray for a plentiful, fruitful harvest birthed and reaped by the Lord of the harvest.
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TRAINER: Allan Mitchell-Volunteer Team Leader, EDM
SOURCE: Recorded for TAKE2
POSTED: Feb 2018