Proverbs 20:4 – Sluggards do not plow in season; so at harvest time they look but find nothing.
I must admit that I am a little sore and sluggish this morning. The challenge has been to move more this week and track all of my activity. So yesterday, My dog, Chester, and I ran about 3.5 miles. I also got up and moved for every 5 minutes that I was sitting doing office work or watching TV. Chester loved the attention and I loved the activity. But I am a bit sore today because of it.
It takes work to weigh and measure out all of your portions. It takes extra time and effort to track all your activity and food that you eat. It takes planning and preparation to make sure you don’t go wild in the weak times. But the harvest is great when you look at what happens on the scales. I am celebrating a victory in that I put on a pair of pants this morning that I couldn’t wear two weeks ago.
It takes effort to win people to Jesus too.
The famous missionary to China, Hudson Taylor, was traveling on a Chinese junk from Shanghai to Ningpo. He had been witnessing to a man named Peter who rejected the gospel but was under deep conviction. In the course of events, Peter fell overboard, but no one made any effort to save him. Taylor sprang to the mast, let down the sail, and jumped overboard in hopes of finding his friend. But no one on board joined Taylor in his frantic search.
Taylor saw a fishing boat nearby and yelled to them to help, but they wouldn’t do it without being compensated for their efforts. Taylor had to promise them every cent he had but finally the fishermen stopped their fishing and began to look for Peter. In less than a minute of dragging their net, they found him, but it was too late. They were too busy fishing to care about saving a drowning man.
It would be easy to condemn the fishermen for their selfishness. But the truth of the matter is that by indicting them, we may condemn ourselves. We are often too busy, too indifferent, or too lazy to try to save those who are lost. It takes effort to win others to Jesus but the harvest of righteousness is well worth it!
This week I was able to visit with a godly woman who will be turning 90 in April. She told me that she wants to share the love of God and hope to others. In fact, she wants to win at least one more person for the Lord this year. That is her goal. At a time when many people think they are too old, too tired, or finished with their work for the Lord, she is still plowing the fields for Jesus. And she can’t wait until harvest to see that fruit of her labors.
Dear Holy Father, You have provided us with salvation through the precious blood of your Son, Jesus Christ. Please help me to not waste one chance to share that salvation with those in need around me. Give me the drive, the courage, and the words to share with those who are lost. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
“What is not started today is never finished tomorrow.”
-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
“Effort only fully releases its reward after a person refuses to quit.”