November 30, 2012

the Harvest Is Plentiful, the Laborers Few...

“… When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “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.” 
Matthew 9:35-38

As Jesus went about His earthly ministry, calling His disciples and healing the sick, He gave a call for others to follow in His footsteps. For you see, Jesus recognized the suffering of the crowds that surrounded Him and He felt compassion. He looked out among the multitudes and knew their physical and spiritual need was great. In our modern world it is so easy to overlook those living in misery or become desensitized to the suffering of others. It is just as easy for the modern Christian to fail to notice the spiritual state of so many others. The call of Jesus in the ninth chapter of Matthew asks each of us to look beyond ourselves. His call is for us to overcome our self-centered perspective and to look at each individual we encounter as a person made in His image. Once we do this, we will begin to see the physical and spiritual need of each individual. I am confident that when our eyes are open to the needs our hearts will be moved to have a Christ-like compassion.

In these verses, we not only see a call for compassion. We see a wonderful truth, that those who are willing to welcome the comfort brought by Christ are many. Jesus tells us that the harvest is plentiful! Did you hear that Christian? Did you hear that Church? The human landscape is ripe with the souls of those who are in need of Christ salvation. Our task is but to gather the harvest.

Are you ready my fellow Christians to be a worker in the harvest? I am pleased to proclaim that many of the Youth of whom I am pastor have heard this plea and have answered the call. This past month, over twenty youth from Millen Baptist, Oak Hill, and Millen U.M.C. spent a Saturday working with Old Savannah City Mission’s donation center. During this day of service, our youth were of great assistance to those who are the front-line workers among the homeless of Savannah. In addition, several of our High School Youth and College-Age Members are in this process of planning and fundraising for an International Mission Trip in the summer of 2013.

I want to encourage each and every reader to become involved in the harvest. How? It will all begin with prayer. Each of us must, as the scripture says, beseech God the Father to call out workers. After that, be willing to support those who are called out. Whether one generously supports the called-out ones through giving to mission organizations or directly support a missionary, let us sacrificially support those who bear witness to Christ. Ultimately, my brother and sister, it is calling of every Christ-follower to be willing to be a worker in the harvest field in which he or she is placed. Therefore, search out those ripe to harvest among you and bring them to the Christ who has compassion on all.