A few weeks ago, I spoke in Alabama. It was their annual Harvest Festival complete with hot dogs, burgers, snow cones and popcorn. I wanted to share some of the things I talked about.
The subject is a familiar one coming from
Matthew 9:37-38 English Standard Version
37 Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few;(a)
I begin by retelling a condensed version of one of my favorite children’s stories…”The little Red hen”
If you are unfamiliar with the story it goes something like this:
There was a little red hen who lived in a barn with other animals. She found some wheat and decided to plant it. She asked the dog if he would help her plant the wheat, Not I, said the dog. She asked the cat; Not I, said the cat. She asked the pig; Not I, said the pig. Since she couldn’t get anyone to help her she planted it herself.
This went on time and time again as she needed help watering the wheat, harvesting the wheat, grinding the wheat into flour, and finally baking the flour into bread. All responses where the same, “Not I”. So the little red hen did all the work herself.
The response was “Not I” until it came down to eat. Before the bread could come out of the oven the dog, cat and the pig where waiting to be offered to eat with the hen. The little red hen reminded them that each time she asked for help no one helped her.
Everyone wants the Psalms 23:5 experience. He prepareth a table (of blessings) before me. Everyone wants to eat; very few want to cook.
I likened the characteristics of each animal to some people I knew. The barking dog, the loudest in the barn, all talk no action. The sneaky cat, always easing around trying to find out everyone’s business, looking for reasons not to help. The lazy pig, no matter what is going on this person always has something else to do that will prohibit them from helping anyone.
We could add a quaking duck, a stubborn mule, or a bull-headed cow to the barn.
I’m sure the hen got discouraged, tired and frustrated but she keep working. One thing to remember that the seeds we plant today will not show up tomorrow. It takes both time and work.
This should encourage some of you. Just because no one wants to help you doesn’t mean that the wheat won’t grow. The wheat in this case could be your idea, your business, your dream. Sometimes you have to plant, water, harvest and bake all by yourself. Everybody won’t come to your meeting, your class, your store or buy your products. It doesn’t mean it won’t work. It means that THOSE PEOPLE aren’t the ones meant to help you.
So I encourage you today…do it, even if you have to do it yourself! Don’t wait for unwilling help, get out there and dig.
Galatians 6:9 Living Bible (TLB)
9 And let us not get tired of doing what is right, for after a while we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t get discouraged and give up.
Let me get a shovel, I got some planting to do.