Day 14 - The Harvest Continued
“The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who planted good seed in his field. But while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and planted weeds among the wheat, and went away. When the wheat sprouted and bore grain, the weeds became evident also...His men said to him, ‘Do you want us to go and gather up the weeds?’ He said, ‘No; for while you are gathering up the weeds, you may uproot the weeds with them. Allow both to grow together until the harvest; and in the time of the harvest I will say to the reapers, “First gather up the weeds and bind them in bundles to burn them up; but gather the wheat into my barn.”’” --Matthew 13:24-29
I’ve always had this irrational need to have to control everything. When I was a kid, I would constantly boss my sister around; when I was in college I’m sure my professors hated me because I was always in their offices making sure my work was exactly the way it was supposed to be; after I got married I tried to tell my wife how to decorate our apartment (that came to an abrupt end). If you’re like me, you may perceive the wrongs in this world and wonder why some things appear to be on an unstoppable downward spiral; part of our answer is in the passage above.
Like the farmer’s workers in Jesus’s story, many of us see a problem and think the best way to fix it would be to remove the symptoms we perceive, but God knows (and wants us to understand) that the evil in this world is a symptom of sin and of satan’s involvement in people’s lives; that while His kingdom is here in part, it has not yet fully come, which means that there is still evil and sin that can ruin lives.
As God’s servants and Christ’s followers, our first response when encountering the brokenness in the world needs to be to demonstrate His love and to intercede (pray for) the ones affected by that brokenness. The dangerous point at which we feel personally responsible for curing brokenness is the point where we inappropriately try to do the job God says belongs to Him alone.
On a blank piece of paper make two columns. At the top of one write “God’s Job” and on the top of the other write “My Job.” Then read John 15:1-16:11. As you read, categorize the responsibilities and responses Jesus is talking about into one of those columns. What is interesting about how your columns turned out?