The year without harvest

This is the harvest. We reap what we sow. Now, we see the fruit of our labor. Unless, as it turns out, I was the fallow field. This year is a rebuilding year, as my football-crazed friends like to say. This year, I plowed, but didn’t manage to sow the seed in enough time to produce a crop. This year I was laid bare. Next year, maybe, but not this year.

That sounds like I lack faith, considering that I just spent two out of the last three weeks visiting my parents’ church where they were discussing harvest and all the blessings that are just waiting for us to reap.  I heard Pastor Mike Allard say that we don’t reap in the same season that we sow. That is absolutely true. I can’t plant cucumber seeds and expect to be eating pickles the next day from those same seeds. It takes time. It also takes perseverance, I learned yesterday. We have to keep after that which we’ve planted, because the weeds grow with no cultivation, while the crops require focus and care. Yesterday’s mantra was “In Due Time” from Galatians  6:9 “In due time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”

In good faith, though, I think I can say that this isn’t my year for harvest. I don’t think I’ve given up when I say that this year, I haven’t sowed much seed. I plowed some field. I pulled up some unfruitful seed in my life. I’ve pruned. I’ve weeded, but like I said, I’m calling it a rebuilding year. I’m waiting on a harvest, I’m going to name and claim my harvest. As Jarrod Brooks said yesterday in his sermon, when you plant tomatoes, you expect tomatoes. I have to know what I’m planting and what I expect to harvest. But this year, I don’t think I’m ready. I am naming my seed, right here: I’m sowing into a full-time job, the Program Coordinator for Adjunct Faculty. I am sowing financial stability, which for me means $2000/month, enough to pay my bills and save for the future. I am sowing personal happiness and contentment, for 2011. That’s when I’m going to reap this harvest.

I don’t know if that takes cowardice or wisdom to say. I’m expecting a harvest in the future, just not in 2010. I am a little odd, and so, the big events in my life seem to take place in odd years. Graduation from high school, college, married, Thing 1 born, Thing 2 born… all in odd years. That’s not to say that I should just look for even years to stink, but I believe that harvests are part of cosmic time, and come around with regularity. I’ve not completely written off 2010, but so far, the track record isn’t good – turned down for two prime jobs, divorced, broke and in need of something wonderful. The seeds I’ve sown this year have yet to bear fruit. I’m hopeful. It’s coming.

Maybe my metaphor is too simplistic. I don’t just have one field. I am a patchwork of acres. God looks down on me and sees the design, the rich green fields and the patches of fallow ground. I’m growing, I’m ripening, I’m preparing for a harvest. Some fields will produce (like this blog, which has exceeded my expectations), some fields will take longer to mature, some need to be pulled up and replanted, some need to rest.

What has your harvest produced? What seeds are you planting right now?


11 responses to “The year without harvest

  1. Maybe it’s like the Star Trek movies–every other one is good. Seriously, it’s tough to have the patience to plant and then wait. You plant and then start hoping your seeds are different from every other seeds, that your seeds will produce fruit instantly. I really appreciate your insights on patience and “rebuilding.”

  2. I am working on the weeding, pruning, and planting myself right now. I have experienced a boat load of crap this past year and a half (pardon me), but I know that good things are on their way. I just have to wait on God’s time, which is really not easy for me.

  3. I understand about being surprised about the blogging harvest. I’m blown away daily. What am I sowing right now? Hopefully some seeds here at work. After nearly 3 years God is opening some doors for me to minister.

  4. This is so good Kristin. I can completely relate to what you’re saying and you have my mind spinning and really evaluating what I’ve been sowing this year. I’ve actually been sowing a lot but not a whole lot of reaping.

    I can really have a microwave faith. I want it to be done already. I want my results in the same breath that I’m obedient. It doesn’t work that way.

    Great thoughts here.

  5. My life was crazy busy for 5 straight years juggling school and work and raising babies. This last year God really called me out for a season or rest. I took a year off school and didn’t take on extra work to compensate. I forced myself to say no to things when I wanted to say yes. Sometimes it was frustrating for me – I can be quite the busybody. But now that December is nearly upon us and I’m set to return to school full time in January (and keep working the usual schedule) I’m thankful that God made me sit the last one out. I fell rested and ready. I feel awesome.

  6. We have a baby about to pop out, so that’s a pretty literal harvest. Moreover, we want to make sure we’re sowing good seeds in the little one from the time he’s born.

  7. Totally relate to this…although it’s been years without reaping for me. 🙂 But God’s faithful. 🙂

    • Thanks for posting, Jason. I think it’s helpful to know that there are others, like me, who have not continually reaped a harvest ever since becomming a Christian. I didn’t follow Christ to reap, but because it’s the sweetest thing I know.

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