Harvest time can often be viewed as the time to gather, to reap what was sowed in another season. However, as I was watching a sermon this morning on the harvest, God drew my thoughts to my children and the spiritual harvest in front of me.
Christ has called His people to proclaim the Gospel, to sow seeds of faith in the people He has placed in our charge and path. Our children are part of this great spiritual harvest.
I think the mistake many of us make is to think the harvest time will be simple, because technically, we assume the hard part is already done. I want to challenge our perspective, as God is challenging me on mine.
I read the Matthew Henry Commentary from John 4:34 today. I was struck by three things and I think we can use this in the spiritual harvest of our children:
The harvest is appointed and looked at before it comes.
In other words, those harvesting were prepared. Parents, we are appointed to raise up a child in the way he/she should go. This isn’t optional and it should be something we prepare for ahead of time. I wasn’t a believer until my second child was five years old. I wasn’t prepared nor was I looking ahead spiritually for them or me. I don’t want you to feel discouraged if you weren’t watching the fields. However, I want to encourage us to begin looking at where we are and where we need to be sowing into your children. Preparation is key.
The harvest is a busy time.
And this means we must prioritize what you allow in this particular season of our life. I heard a farmer once say, “The corn isn’t going to pick itself.” And neither will our children magically morph into mature spiritual believers. It takes time and if we all are being pulled in a billion different directions how in the world will we ever have time to harvest the fields? This part of the harvest is difficult for me because I have what many call FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out). I over commit my time and focus to everything except where it is needed. Even if my commitments are considered good, they are not where my harvest is in the season.
The harvest has a small window to get the job done.
Before we know it, the children are out of the house, blazing their own path in the world. And if we are not careful, we are left wondering if we spiritually prepared them for what they would face. If you gather nothing else from this post, please hear this: The enemy wants us to think we have all the time in the world to teach them the importance of God’s truth. He wants us to think Sunday School and dinner time prayer is sufficient for them, but it simply is not parents.
The spiritual harvest requires us to expect and prepare for the busy, and often, difficult task of training and preparing our children. We are truly on borrowed time.