Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Praying for a Harvest

It's hard to believe that September is here already. The summer seems to speed by and while the official beginning of fall is still a few weeks away, the weathermen on T.V. are already talking about how September 1 is the start of "meteorological fall."
Fall means shorter days, cooler temperatures, falling leaves and harvest. While depending on the crops that a farmer grows there may be several harvests in a year, the big harvest season that many think of is just around the corner.
Jesus speaks of the harvest when he refers to people who are ripe to respond to the message of the gospel. In Matthew 9:37-38, speaking to his disciples he says, "The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest."
I have heard a lot of people in our day make the argument that when Jesus spoke it was a different day, and that while there was a great receptivity to the gospel then it just isn't the same today. As for me, I believe that we can take Jesus at his word. Maybe instead of shifting the blame onto others we, the Church ought to examine whether we are "praying earnestly to the Lord of the harvest."
As we move into September we are getting ready to kick off our church-wide week of Prayer and Fasting at The Orchard. We are asking people to commit to pray for our church, our community and most of all for the harvest and to dedicate one, or perhaps several days to fast along with our prayer. Will you join us the week of September 11-17.
O God, I take you at your Word - give us a great harvest of souls won to Christ. Touch my neighbor, my co-worker, my friend who needs to know you. Soften their heart even now, and raise up bold, faithful and courageous laborers to go in to your harvest fields, even your field here in McHenry, Woodstock, Wonder Lake, Crystal Lake and beyond. And Lord, as they go, prosper their steps. Raise up laborers. Bring in the harvest. In Jesus' name. Amen.
Oh, and by the way, it's pretty interesting to note who we see going out in to the harvest field in Matthew 10!
Are you praying for the harvest?
May God grant us the greatest harvest we have ever seen at The Orchard Church this fall.