Do you ever find the church calendar unhelpful? Or feel stuck in a church season?
Ritual and rhythms help our spiritual journey. Anniversaries give opportunities for remembering. But sometimes, I feel a frustration, almost a play acting whilst we wait to celebrate Christmas or Easter morning. Advent is heavily weighted to expecting Christmas, rather than the second coming of Jesus, that the world is yet to experience. Let’s celebrate! Remembering, reflecting but expectantly.
We are in the harvest season. A rewarding gathering of fruits of hedgerows, allotments, and fields.
What of spiritual harvest? Is this as seasonal as plums and marrows? Is it now? Is it even something we expect? Has the seed planting, watering, and nurturing gone well? The Holy Spirit is at work in places, in all seasons, we are not aware of. We might be seasonal as those that plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy.
Part of my lay leader role has been seed sowing amongst worldwide tourists with the Intercontinental Church Society. I don’t have a harvest overview, but it’s God’s worldwide team’s mission.
I have been asked to encourage people, new to a town, to seek Jesus. With a longer and more static view, do I expect to see a harvest? Too right I do! This is not just a mission to create cosy feelings of a new place to live, but with expectation that the Holy Spirit will call people to repentance, celebrate his forgiveness, find that faith in Jesus is an anchor in an uncertain world, and become his hope filled followers.
‘Isn’t there a saying, ‘It’s still four months until harvest?’ I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! they are ripe for harvest.’ Spiritual harvest is available at any time. Our life and ministry may have its seasons, but not necessarily God’s harvest. Where meek souls will receive him, still the dear Christ enters their lives, and they enter the kingdom of God.
Not so seasonal as plums, and marrows. No need to wait until Christmas.
The harvest is plentiful but few harvesters. We can change this by asking the Lord of the harvest to send workers into the areas to harvest. A bumper harvest.