Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The harvest

For over 25 years I have read almost on a daily basis from the daily devotional book MY UTMOST FOR HIS HIGHEST. The 365 readings based on the teaching of Oswald Chambers has been food for my soul, spirit, mind and heart.

This morning I was reading the devotional once again and saw something I had never truly seen and understood before.
In the reading for October 16th Chambers draws attention to the verse in Matt. 9:38 which says "Pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest." He goes on to make this statement "He (God) owns the harvest that is produced through distress and through conviction of sin. This is the harvest for which we have to pray that laborers be sent out to reap."

What caught my attention is what produces the harvest--Distress and Conviction--and who is the Lord of this process--Jesus' Father. Jesus clearly says God is the Lord of the harvest. God wants what distress and Conviction produce in human lives.

A harvest is something one wants and is willing to invest in. For the harvest God desires to come in, men and women must be put into distress and conviction. God uses pain to prepare the harvest. God is the Lord over pain. Pain is not a mistake on God's part. It is a strategy of harvest.

Perhaps the laborers are so few is because we do not want to go in the direction of the world's distress and conviction. Perhaps we do not like to think that God is involved in such things. It seems to me that the natural direction for most humans is away from distress and conviction. Yet, that is where the harvest God wants is waiting to be harvested.

God is the Lord over human distress and conviction. Jesus certainly went where the distress and conviction left people ripe for His message. Going in the direction of the world's distress and conviction is the right direction for those who can see what God is after. God wants souls that are ripe to be saved from their lives without Him.

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