Seasons come and go and holidays pass us by but today I am reminded to never take the harvest time for granted. One of humanity’s Achilles heels is pride, and harvest time is a great reminder of this. If there were no harvest, we would not be able to eat. God is so kind to provide rain and sunshine over the whole earth so that we can enjoy a harvest that supplies us for months and months until the next harvest. Listen to these words of Jesus:
He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. -Matthew 5:45
And the prophet Isaiah offers this insight on the harvest:
You have enlarged the nation
and increased their joy;
they rejoice before you
as people rejoice at the harvest… -Isaiah 4:3
I want to introduce you a section of a sermon by C.H. Spurgeon that gives me pause during this time of harvest. He was a pastor in London in the late 1800’s, but he had a real affinity for the countryside and the outdoors. Compiled in a book called, Farm Sermons, you can read some of his messages to country congregations. They are very insightful, especially to urban dwellers who, in his words, live in a world surrounded by “dungy bricks.” I hope you enjoy his reflection on why we should never take the harvest time for granted.
We are singularly dependent on God; far more so than most of us imagine. When the children of Israel were in the wilderness they went forth every morning and gathered the manna (See Exodus 16:1-5). Our manna does not come to us every morning, but it comes to us once a year. It is as much a heavenly supply as if it lay like a hoar-frost round about the camp. If we went out into the field and gathered food which dropped from the clouds we should think it a great miracle; and is it not as great a marvel that our bread should come up from the earth as that it should come down from the sky? The same God who bade the heavens drop with angels’ food bids the dull earth in its due season yield corn for mankind.
Therefore, whenever we find that harvest comes, let us be grateful to God, and let us not suffer the season to pass over without psalms of thanksgiving. I believe I shall be correct if I say that there is never in the world, as a rule, more than sixteen months’ supply of food; that is to say, when the harvest is gathered in, there may be sixteen months’ supply; but at the time of the harvest there is not usually enough wheat in the whole world to last the population more than four or five months; so that if the harvest did not come we should be on the verge of famine. We live still from hand to mouth. Let us pause and bless God, and let the joy of the harvest be the joy of gratitude.
-C.H. Spurgeon, Farm Sermons, p. 225.