Thursday, November 5, 2015

A Lesson From The Pilgrims

November.  A time to give thanks.  I appreciate the reminder, and I really love that giving thanks, a Christian principle, becomes a nationwide focus.  But there is a part of our Thanksgiving holiday that we Christians perhaps do not think enough about.  The first thanksgiving was the response of the Pilgrims to their first successful harvest in the New World.  This first harvest was no small thing.  It represented, quite literally, the difference between life and death.  Without food safely put away, there would be very little to eat during the long, cold winter.  Truly, the giving of thanks was most appropriate.

In 21st Century America, some of us have difficulty in gathering enough funds to purchase our food, but most of us are not personally concerned with bringing in an annual agricultural harvest.  But all believers have a spiritual harvest to which we must attend.  In his gospel account, Matthew records for us Jesus’s words: “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.”  When we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, we become part of that harvest.  And though we may not think about it often, we are also the ones who are working to bring in the Lord’s harvest.  It is our privilege to proclaim Christ and invite others to join us as part of God’s family.  This is God’s harvest, and it is essential to the life of the church and the eternal lives of those to whom we minister.

In Ephesians 4, Paul teaches us that our Lord has given some as evangelists.  I am most definitely not one of those evangelists.  God has gifted and called me to a different ministry.  But all believers are ambassadors of Christ, called by Him to make disciples of all nations (Matt. 28:19).  It is not that we must tell others about Christ; rather, we have the incredible privilege of participating in our Lord’s work of redeeming this world, helping to bring in the spiritual harvest that will culminate in the end times.

So as we appropriately give thanks to God for all of His provision and blessing, let us also attend to His spiritual harvest and give thanks that we have been included in it.