Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Embracing the Mindset of a Farmer

"Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near. Don’t grumble against one another, brothers and sisters, or you will be judged. The Judge is standing at the door!

Brothers and sisters, as an example of patience in the face of suffering, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. As you know, we count as blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy." (James 5:7-11)

This last weekend I gave a short word to the IVC family about us being in a season of farming. Farming requires great patience, trust, and work without seeing fruit right away...a hard concept to grasp for us who are part of the microwave generation.

In my early years in Christ I had a lot of zeal..a zeal that caused me go from hype to hype...always looking for the next great meeting, sermon, book, worship experience, encounter, etc. (granted I was hungry too). However, when we live like this over a long period of time, never learning contentment in Christ and life, we can become a lot like the man described in James 1: double minded, driven, tossed, and unstable in all his ways.

This last Sunday morning God spoke to my heart and reminded me that His sons and daughters go from glory to glory, not hype to hype. He was also reminding me personally, as a loving Father does, to not measure growth and success by what I see but rather by my obedience to His word (Joshua 1:7). I have been a bit restless coming off of an incredible year and entering into summer where everything changes, and the pace moves from running to a slow walk as about 60% of the fellowship scatters for the summer. Having ministered in IV for a decade now, I know the summer season is a crucial time of resting and preparing for the next year, though each year by the grace of God I have to adjust to it and embrace rest.

In a culture filled with messages of instant gratification, the kingdom of God gives a message of eternal satisfaction...which means at times you might not always see the fruit, the reward, or the promise.  Yet you know you're sowing and laboring for something that pays great dividends both in this life and the life to come.

"But godliness with contentment is great gain." (1 Timothy 6:6)

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