The Harvest



 (This piece of writing is almost a year old. I wrote it last summer while I was in Oregon .)


har ^ vest

Noun- the process or period of gathering crops.

Verb- gather (a crop) as a harvest

I love words that can be used as nouns or verbs. Words that are so useful to a language they are bilingual.

Where I live  in southern Ontario there is diversity with crops. And the fields don’t stretch on for eons. I like the greenness of corn, the smell of fresh hay, the soybeans turning color and always my favourite is a field of ripened grain. Especially if it is on the foreground of a vibrant blue sky. I have taken numerous pictures of this. And I feel blessed this summer. I am having the experience of HARVEST in  Oregon State. In the Willamette Valley.  You see the dust before you see the combine. You see the windrows. You see the rakes. And the balers. I tell you what. It is quite a process. Then you see stacks of bales- six high- four wide- waiting to be picked up and loaded onto the waiting semi. 20150703_205708.jpg

These semis then transfer the bales pack to the press where they get unloaded in systematic fashion and dropped into the proper shed. There are so many people involved. Guys from all over the place, with all levels of experience, are thrown together. They get plopped into houses with people they may or may not know. The men in charge of the different crews are constantly organizing and sending the guys to the fields they need to go.

Sometimes things do not always go as planned. Equipment breaks down. The one on the baler feels like he is not doing anything productive because he is sitting there waiting for the problem to be fixed. 20150709_193026.jpg

Then there are those behind the scene. Wives and other ladies cooking. Cleaning. Doing laundry. Just keeping the daily grind going so that everyone can enjoy the flow.  At 6:00 when we meet for supper, I like to look over the mess of people- old men with grey beards and keen wisdom , young men trying to strut tall and strong with dusty pants and dirty shirts, little boys running to hug their daddy’s leg and quickly downing their supper so they can go ride on the tractor afterward. Women come loaded down with towel wrapped hot dishes. Older women teaching the younger women how to treat the men on The Harvest. How to set out a hot meal on the tables by the river at 6:00 every night so that in 40 years from now it will still happen this way. Young girls fill water cups and grab toddlers to help them fill their plates. In the cooling down of the day about 60 people of all ages bow their heads to the Maker of The Harvest and the Giver of Life and thank Him for abundant blessings of health and safety through the day.20150710_180721.jpg

 All these people from young to old are making a sacrifice for The Harvest. Wives and husbands sacrifice time they normally spend together for the sake of The Harvest. Young guys leave home for a month or two and relinquish their mothers cooking and care as well as friends and fun and safe keeping at home for the sake of The Harvest. Children sacrifice their daddy and routine for the sake of The Harvest.

We often talk about another Harvest. And so we should. Jesus talked about this Harvest. This Harvest also involves a “crop.”

He talked about fields being ready to Harvest and no one being available for it. Luke 10:2 says,” And he said unto them,” The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers to the harvest.”

This harvest also includes the young, the old, the strutting men, and toddlers, and babies. It includes dirt, sweat, and grime. Dust and detail.

It also is a process. You need the combiners, the rakes, the balers, the stackers, the truck drivers, the unloaders, and the organizers. You need those preparing bodily food and spiritual food.

Sometimes things do not always go as planned. In fact, it looks like no matter which way you turn- there are break downs.

This harvest also includes sacrifice. The giving up. The moving away unto unfamiliar ground. The newness of new land. Sacrificing everything familiar for the sake of saving a crop that will otherwise spoil.

I am trying to imagine what it would be like to see all these crops, beautiful as they are, going to waste because no one was here to harvest it. All the equipment to drive to do the harvesting and no one available for it. The tremendous waste of rotting crops- because no one sacrificed their wants and needs and wishes to save the crop. 20150706_205632

Harvest is exciting, people. I can tell. It gets in your blood. It can be early mornings and late nights. And something about the craziness, and the dust, and the rush to “gather” it before the rains… well…. It just all bonds together into this one package of urgency and concern.

Working in The Harvest of The Kingdom is exciting too. I know. It gets in your blood. It can be early mornings and late nights.  And something about the craziness of working with souls in the dust and the rush to “gather them in before the rains of judgement”…. Well…. It just all bonds together into one package of urgency and concern.



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