Here in the northeast part of Indiana we are seeing the evidence of a changing season. Summer is ending a in a few days Fall will begin. The corn and soy beans are turning from their green color to brown. Farmers are in the fields and the harvesting of the crops has begun. The months of April and May are used to plant and the growing season lasts around 5 months . It will take about 5- 6 weeks to collect the entire harvest. I love watching the crops being planted and the seeds sprouting up into full grown maturity. I also love watching the harvest and the fruit of the ground that will provide life giving sustenance for animals and humans! As we witness this material Sowing & Reaping it reminds us of a spiritual one as well. So many lessons are found in the Sowing and Reaping of seed. I would like to mention a few LAWS OF THE HARVEST!
"Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that
soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit
reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not."
I. WE HARVEST WHAT HAS BEEN PLANTED! ( Galatians 6:7)
We should not deceive ourselves. So many live life as fatalists. They think that everything that happens to them is out of their control. It is true many things that happen in our life are out of our control but most are withing our control. We have the power of choice. We can plan our lives to a great degree by making choices based upon God's Word. More often the things that happen to us are the natural outflow of the choices we have made. Sometimes I wish that were not true when I make bad decisions nonetheless it is true. Life may seem easier when we blame our past, parents, neighbors, circumstances, employers, or our whatevers, instead of taking personal responsibility. But the scriptures exhort us to not be deceived. As hard as it is to recognize that I am where I am because of the choices I have made for the most part is a wise to do so. I heard it said years ago, " Life is 10 percent what happens to us and 90 percent how we chose to deal with it. I have found this a worthy truth to remember and embrace in life. Once I recognize the universe operates according to principles established by Almighty God and embrace those principles I will not have to reap the negative consequences that come with bad choices. I can start making godly choices and begin experiencing positive results. God is not mocked, if we sow bad seed it will produce bad results, if we sow good seed it will produce good results. God sees to it , one way or the other! It is a LAW OF THE HARVEST! So it begs the question, WHAT ARE YOU SOWING in your marriage, family, friendships, finances, work place , your walk with God?
II. WE HARVEST THE SAME IN KIND AS WE PLANT! ( Galatians 6:7-8)
Notice in the text the word " whatever". Every farmer understands you don't go into a field and plant corn and expect a harvest of apples. It is obvious that what we plant in our marriage is what we harvest. In ever area of life we will harvest the same as we sow. If we sow to the flesh we will reap the consequences of the flesh. If we sow to the Spirit then the fruits of the Spirit will be the results of the matured plant! The bad news is sowing seeds of the flesh brings disaster and death. The good news is sowing seeds of the Spirit brings abaundant life relationships and results. Perhaps you have had some bad crops in the past but the good news is if you change the seed you can change the future harvest. Truth is - WE CAN MAKE CHOICES BUT WE CANNOT CHOOSE THE CONSEQUENCES OF OUR CHOICES! We cannot SOW WILD SEED AND PRAY FOR CROP FAILURE, it just won't happen. Some who are in their youth think they may BEAT THE ODDS but remember GOD IS NOT MOCKED!
III. WE HARVEST IN A DIFFERENT SEASON THAN WE PLANT! ( Galatians 6:9)
This third principle reinforces the reason some think they can beat the odds. Yet every farmer understands that he can't sow in the spring and reap in the spring. Between every season of sowing a reaping their is a season of maturing into final harvest. There is a delay to harvest. Often times bad seed sown looks as if we got by with it, that there were no immediate bad consequences. The same can be said for sowing good seed, it looks at first as if the discipline of sowing good seed does not make a difference. It takes time for the final harvest to mature into its final product! How may parents would love to go back and sow better seed with their children? How many mates would like to go back and sow good seed into the life of their wife or husband? All the time sowing seed and thinking it wasn't really producing a crop failure!
IV. WE HARVEST THE CROP OF GOD IF WE PERSEVERE! ( Galatians 6:9)
For those who are attempting to sow good seed take heart, don't grow weary for in due season you will reap a great harvest if you continue to sow the right seed! Evil attempts to come to the crop on a consistent basis. Weeds, insects , drought, floods all threaten the harvest. You don't have to work hard for dandelions to grow, they will grow on their own but you will have to work hard to get rid of them and to keep them from growing. This is true in every realm of life. Weeds just show up in our family, marriage, and friendships. They show up in our work places, recreation places and even in our worship places. We must be persistent to work hard to sow good seed and to continually do so. Some may find yourself in a difficult field of life today and what you need to do is keep on sowing good seed. Because in due season you will reap the results of your hard work of sowing good seed of faith.
V. NOTHING CAN BE DONE ABOUT LAST YEARS HARVEST BUT WE CAN ABOUT THIS YEARS HARVEST!
Last years harvest is in the barn and some has already been consumed on this years life but we can start to make good choices now! We can decide to use the rest of our life to be the person that God wants us to be! This harvest season can be a turning point of a God changing time in your life where you honestly come to God with repentance for sowing bad seed and faith to sow good seed all the days of your life. Because of your humility and willingness to acknowledge that you have planted some things you regret and obedience to plant good see from this moment on you will allow God's grace to energize your future. God is waiting !
Terry has been the Senior Pastor of Liberty for 30 years. He and his wife, Karen, have 4 children, 11 grandchildren, and 1 spoiled dog named Cooper.