“The harvest is plentiful” is a great thing to hear if you’re a farmer. It is like music to any farmers’ ears knowing that their year of hard labor will reap much. The problem in this passage is that the workers are few. Almost nothing wears more on a farmer’s stress than not having enough adequate workers.
Growing up a farmer’s daughter and now being a farmer’s wife, I am somewhat familiar with what harvest season entails and how the workers have a big impact on how harvest season will proceed.
Harvest season starts in the fall. It is harvest season right now here on this fallen earth. There are millions of lost and searching souls that don’t know Jesus. So that means that there is plenty of love to give to the lost in your community. Some of the lost sheep around us might include: a regular in the establishment you waitress in, a coworker you communicate with daily, or even one of your own family members. The harvest is all around us.
Christians are called to be the harvest workers. Why, then, does Jesus say they are few?
Many Christians have little to no evidence of fruit in their lives. They might go to church. They might not do “bad things.” They accepted salvation for selfish reasons and are taking the gospel for granted.
Other Christians are making loud noises, but do not produce any real fruit. “Loud” churches are holding big events to draw in large crowds. Conferences and retreats might fill their calendars. They keep themselves very busy, but they are not reaching the lost.
The previous verses (verses 35-36) say that Jesus went through all the towns and synagogues preaching and healing. He saw the people, and He had compassion on them, because they were helpless like sheep without a shepherd.
In John 10:11, we read that Jesus is the good shepherd. And we know He leads by example, so we are called to help seek out the lost sheep and bring in the harvest. (Matthew 10:6)
How do we do that? In verse 38, Jesus tells the disciples to PRAY and ASK the Lord to send out workers into His harvest. Then, in the following chapter, He tells them HOW to take part in His harvest.
Friends, I am writing this for myself. I am guilty of loving attending church events and women’s conferences more than I am about loving the lost. I am guilty of having seasons without producing any fruit. But we don’t have to live in this. Jesus has freed us from every short-coming and set before us His perfect example. We need to be earnestly seeking Him to know how He is calling us into His harvest.
The harvest might be plentiful, but the workers don’t need to be so few.