“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”
Galatians 6:9 (NIV)
Do you ever get tired? I do. Especially when I’m busy trying to do God’s purpose in my own strength, like we talked about last week. I may start out using God’s strength but then I have an exceptionally busy week with looming deadlines or my calendar is full enough with work but then add in all the things that keep our household running smoothly and extra activities for the kids. Soon I’m rushing through my time with God, or falling asleep while praying or what I’m reading in His Word doesn’t seem to apply to me right now. And before I know it, the enemy has succeeded in getting me to work in my own strength again (or try to) and any victory for God that may have been getting achieved is now lost ground again. I start to look at what hasn’t happened instead of remembering the truth… and that is what I want to talk about today.
What do you do during those times when you appear to be working hard and seeking God and trying to follow His will… but you don’t see results? God gave me a word picture last week to hopefully encourage you during these times.
God talks a lot in the Bible about various seasons. There is a season for everything under Heaven. And that includes the planting and harvesting season. Not every season can be a harvest… and not every season will be for planting. However, in order to produce a bountiful harvest, there will have to be a season of bountiful planting.
I talked two weeks ago about how God is in charge of the purpose and the results of the mission. However, we choose whether or not we will obey His instructions for our specific mission. And that is where this word picture fits in. If we don’t obey God by dutifully planting what He wants planted, where He wants it planted and how much He wants planted, then the outcome of the harvest will in part be up to us. Because, when it’s time for the harvest to arrive (and the harvest will always arrive in His time), it is those who are faithful that reap the harvest, those who choose to obey His instructions.
Paraphrasing the senior pastor at my church, he explains this concept well. God calls us to obey completely. If we do more than God asks, we are disobeying. If we do less than God asks, we are disobeying. If we do differently than God asks, we are disobeying. It is only by doing exactly what God asks that we are obedient and faithful. God calls us to be obedient and faithful. Regardless of His desires, He still gives us free will to choose whether or not to obey. When we obey, then when the harvest comes, we will reap that harvest specific for our lives. If we choose to do it half His way and half our way – is that really obedience? If we choose to strike out on our own path – is that really obedience? Will the last two choices produce a harvest when the time comes?
Let me encourage us all two ways today. First, let us continue to be unwaveringly obedient to God in all areas that He calls us. He has promised we would reap a harvest if we don’t grow weary in doing good. Second, remember that God is going to have His purpose fulfilled here on earth. He has chosen us/invited us to be part of that purpose but He won’t force it upon us.
I, for one, want to be used of God in every area of my life. I want to be obedient to the assignments He has called me and always remember that I work ultimately for Him. I want to be planting when He asks me to plant, harvesting when He asks me to harvest, and wise enough to not worry or stress out when I think it should be time to harvest but He wants me to continue to plant for a while longer.
It all comes down to trust… do I trust that God knows what He’s doing? Do I trust that He loves me enough to want the best for me? Do I trust that when bad times come (and they will – He has told us repeatedly in His Word that they will come) God ultimately will get the victory and glory if I continue to let Him lead?
© Cheri Swalwell 2016