Monday, February 8, 2010

Life on the Farm

I enjoyed a great discussion this weekend with several couples from our church that have come to mean the world to me. As we were sharing some things going on in our lives, we begin to joke that the seasons we were going through were similar to life on a farm. There were people in a season of deciding what to sow, plowing the field, reaping the harvest and resting the field.

Several of my friends were in a discernment season, trying to decide what to invest their time in. T his took the form of many hard decisions and taking time to determine the priorities in their lives. Decisions like taking new jobs and leaving current positions were being prayerfully considered. We were reminded that God is so faithful to open and close doors to direct our steps when we humbly ask Him for His will.

Others were in a plowing season in which their head was down and eyes were focused on getting through the task at hand. Unrewarding jobs, grueling schedules and little to none kudos are usually found during this season. Satan seems ever present to make us feel unappreciated and useless, making us question the work we’re doing. One friend mentioned that her aunt in Iowa would always say, “Sometimes you’ve just got to plow the corn!” Her wise counsel instructed that even though there are things we don’t enjoy doing or are difficult, sometimes they just have to be done!

A few were in the harvesting season and have begun to see the fruits of their labor. It was awesome to celebrate the victories that are coming from all they have invested! By pouring themselves into others, my friends are opening the doors of possibilities and leading others into God’s hope for their future. God is rewarding their obedience by showing them the fruit of their labor of love.

Finally we discussed the resting season. While images of palm trees, lounge chairs and drinks with umbrellas may come to mind, more accurately it is a time of being still before God. I don’t know about you, but it’s usually easier to serve others than it is to just be still. After a harvest, the farmers cut down the stalks, turn over the ground and then let it rest while it gets replenished of the essential nutrients it will need for the next season. For us, this is a time spent one on one with God to replenish and prepare for the next season of sowing. It’s a precious time spent with Him learning and growing deeper in His love for us as He prepares us for the next season of serving.

No matter what season you find yourself in, take heart in knowing that you’re not alone! You’re working shoulder to shoulder with all of us. We are co-laborers working the fields together by God’s strength and for His glory. He equips us to tend to His fields, winning hearts for the kingdom. He has a plan for our lives and, as one of my friends eloquently stated, ‘each stage is an integral part of a bountiful harvest!’

Be blessed!
Jennifer

“Then he said to his disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.’" Matthew 9:37-38

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