As a child growing up in a farming family, I can remember my dad coming alive around September and October. There was an extra bounce in his step, not because the trees were turning all kinds of cool colors, but because the harvest was here.
If you know my dad (Bro. Ricky Cunningham), you know how much he loves farming. But I’ve come to believe he really just tolerates farming (driving tractors, planing corn, fixing equipment, etc.) so he can do the one thing he really loves, driving a big red combine through 200 bushel corn.
Here are a few reasons why I think my dad loves the harvest so much:
- Harvest marks the end of a long season of growing. The farmer’s work begins in the spring and carries through the summer. There are many long, hot days and nothing ever seems to go just according to plan. But after summer comes the harvest, and all that work translates into fields full of head high corn.
- Harvesting is more fun than planting. Planting is all about putting seeds in the ground in hopes that it will grow into something great. Harvest is all about results. Harvest is when you get to put the combine in the field, reap what was planted, and watch the monitor tell you how many bushels those seeds produced.
- Harvest means payday. For the farmer, the planting season is about spreading out seeds, while the harvest is all about gathering in the seeds. In the harvest, individual seeds that were planted months earlier have now multiplied into hundreds of kernels of corn. Those kernels get loaded on a truck and taken to the grainery for payday.
- More people can fit in the cab of the combine. If you happen to catch my dad driving his big red combine in LBL, chances are he won’t be alone. That’s because there is plenty of room in the cab for passengers, and my dad loves to fill the buddy seat with grandsons, friends, or whoever else wants to ride. And if you find yourself in that buddy seat, you can bet my dad will be talking about how many bushels the corn is making, and how the overall harvest is doing.
As I think about how much my dad loves the harvest, I can’t help but think about how much my heavenly Father loves the harvest too. For many of the same reasons, my heavenly Father loves watching laborers go into the fields of life and see people pass from death to life through the news of the gospel.
And for that harvest of souls to happen, it takes laborers like you and me praying, giving, and going. And as we do these things, and men and women repent and believe in the gospel, I can imagine my heavenly Father with the same big smile I see on my dad’s face as he watches those ears of corn pour into the corn header.
The leaves are falling. The harvest is here. Will you take part in the greater harvest of souls? It’s even better than 200 bushel corn.