Gardening and its various derivitves are still popular. Beekeeping is on the rise, even in urban settings. Our city recently permitted chickens to be raised within the city limits, but no roosters. Many people landscape their yards with flowering plants. All this comes from our natural desire to nurture growing things and gather a harvest. During the last century the harvest of our labor has migrated away from farming and ranching to manufacturing, construction, and service industries. It often becomes more difficult to appreciate a harvest which is a function of time rather than the product of our labor. My father-in-law left the family farm and became an automotive worker. He took pride in the company, it’s products, and reputation which connected him to things that were good, although the actual physical labor was harsh and potentially demeaning.
Father God understands that men would be enslaved by corporations, states, circumstances and even other men. He is good and sets the captives free, but irrespective of our status of freedom He wants us to embrace the principle of sowing and reaping. “Slaves, obey your earthly masters with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ. Obey them not only to win their favor when their eye is on you, but as slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from your heart. Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not people, because you know that the Lord will reward each one for whatever good they do, whether they are slave or free.” (Ephesians 6: 5-8). This passage is a classic motivator for Believers who struggle to make sense out of their labors. It touches too many principles to address each one here, but the promise today is a reminder to know the Lord will reward each one for whatever good they do.
It is from the Lord that our reward, harvest, building, fruit, profit, and provision comes. Proverbs 14:23 says, “All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty.” The principal of sowing and reaping is in effect today as always. “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.” (Gal. 6: 7). Moreover, God is good and just on every level, sphere and in every facet. “Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.” (2 Cor. 9: 6). We are not to become fixed on piling up resources and working ourselves into an early grave succumbing to greed. It is God who gives the increase and to Him we owe our priority, most intense allegiance and attention. “Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.” (Galatians 6: 8).
It is hard to progress in our profession, trade, career, and labor. When tasks are difficult at work, I often remarked, “that’s why they call it work and pay us to do it.” Here is a secret to success, “Do the things that others, (the unsuccessful), will not or choose not to do.” Yet, do everything, especially acts of kindness, as unto the Lord, who sees all. While we travel the path of giving and loving we find Yeshua there along side us. “For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice. But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.” (James 3: 16-18). Many of you are in difficult places, some even in caustic, hostile environments and you need to have confidence in Father God, who can rescue you or transform the situation in a moment. He is interested in you and how you will reach out to Him, stand firm in your faith, and, if necessary, suffer as Yeshua did in the center of God’s perfect will. You are the salt of the earth; a light set on a hill; united with Messiah, a citizen of the Kingdom, resident to the covenants and promise, full of hope and full of God’s Holy Spirit. In Yeshua Messiah you will gain the victory.