DAY 16: Reaping Success
God has created laws we all live by whether we know it or not. One of His laws is the law of Sowing and Reaping. Sowing and Reaping is easily described in the picture of a farmer. When a farmer takes a seed and sows it and then nurtures that seed, he can expect a harvest. This is not a feel-good theology; it’s an actual reality we see throughout the Word from the beginning to the end. In Genesis 3 Eve sowed a seed of disobedience and reaped a harvest of a fallen world. The Israelites sowed unbelief and reaped 40 years of wandering in the desert. John the Baptist sowed unwavering obedience and became a beacon of hope. He was a prophet for the Messiah in his generation. Peter sowed fear and reaped disgrace, but in the second chapter of Acts, he sowed courage and reaped a harvest of revival. The law of sowing and reaping helps us understand how God thinks and it teaches us to be diligent with the things we’ve been given. It’s not arrogant to expect a harvest if we have sowed good seed. It’s called wisdom! When we diligently sow seeds and never look for a harvest, we are not being wise. In Ecclesiastes 3:2, the Bible says there is a season to everything, a season to sow and a season to reap. So, how do we receive our harvest? The first step in understanding spiritual promotion is having eyes to look for it. A good farmer examines his soil, considers his seed, watches the seasons, evaluates the rainfall, calculates the sunlight, and eventually goes into the field to reap a harvest. Every aspect of this process is vitally important! Maturity is looking at our lives as a whole picture, not just in partial moments. If we had understood as young men and women, that the seeds we sowed would be reaped, we might have been more cautious to sow the right seeds. Some of us have spent decades sewing wrong seed. It will take a long time to weed these areas in our lives. But don’t lose hope! We serve a God who holds time in His hands and is able to change things very quickly if we are willing to work hard with Him. Many years ago, I was discouraged with where my life was going. I had given many years to serving the church and loving people. I was tired and worn out and a bit disillusioned by all my years of service. I went to the Lord and asked Him what I should do. You see, I was busy praying, reading the Word, and asking for more change in my life. The Lord spoke this simple word to me and it revolutionized my understanding. He said, “It’s time to look for your harvest!” Look for my harvest? I’d never thought of that. I just assumed I was to keep praying harder, worship harder, serve harder and that was my solution. The picture I received as He spoke was this: I looked up from the ground I had been toiling over to see if my plants had sprung any shoots. When I looked up, I saw a huge orchard full of trees with fruit hanging off of them and I was shocked. At that moment, I understood God was not asking me to sow, or even ask for more, but to expect from Him. I imagined myself walking along and taking the fruit off of these trees that I had worked so hard to grow. This is the picture I want to give you. Yes, there are those of us who need to get down on our hands and knees, dig the dirt, water the seed, and make sure that the small shoot is safe. But there are others of us that have been sewing for a long time and it’s time to look up and collect our harvest. If I don’t collect the harvest, the fruit that is hanging off my tree will fall to the ground and rot. Some of us, because we are not willing to reap our harvest, have areas in our lives that stink with rotten fruit…fruit that others would have absolutely enjoyed if we had been willing to give it to them.