Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me, and to finish His work. Do you not say, ‘There are still four months and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest! And he who reaps receives wages, and gathers fruit for eternal life, that both he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together. For in this the saying is true: ‘One sows and another reaps.’ I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their labors.” John 4:34-38 (NKJV)
So often, we think that there is plenty of time to get around to those spiritual duties we postpone….when I am uncomfortable with something, I put it off. I assume that the “right time” to talk to that friend or neighbor about God will come later, but it certainly is not NOW! I wriggle out of opportunities that make me squirm a bit or that are a bit unclear. I ask God for MORE direction and confirmation. I figure that the harvest will come later, when it is fully ripe. However, Jesus says that the fields are ripe for harvest NOW! The real issue is, do I really care? Do I care enough about people to risk feeling uncomfortable with their pain, their unanswered questions, and my own ignorant bumbling to really dare to tell them the good news of Jesus Christ? Or do I simply assume that the harvest is a job for special people with special gifts and particular training? Do I excuse myself from participation in the harvest because I think only certain people with “THAT” kind of spiritual destiny are called to work in the harvest field? Perhaps I don’t like the field I see in front of me — I prefer fields that are more removed from my home base, more exotic or more grandiose. Perhaps I prefer to harvest kiwis rather than the soybeans in my own back yard…. I surely need to repent — to repent of my own unwillingness and reluctance, my own fears and insecurities, and my own distaste for getting a little dirt on my hands. The harvest is HERE. All I need to do is lift up my eyes and ask God to help me see it with His eyes. The fields are before us, ripe for the picking. God has called us to it, and we have no excuse NOT to plunge in and reap the fruit (and the rewards!). He invites us to come. He will meet us there, if we will but dare to step out!