As many of you may know, autumn is often referred to as the Harvest Season. Many of us celebrate this perennial activity by placing pumpkins and gourds in and around our home or by heading to a local orchard for apple picking. It’s beautiful. It’s bucolic. It’s, according to some people, the best time of year.
Students at Evergreen are especially keen on wondering about the hows and whys of things. Feeling inspired by these wonderful children, I recently found myself pondering on the different “hows” related to harvesting. I’ve picked blueberries, cherries, peaches, and apples. Every year, I plant a veggie garden and enjoy harvesting peppers, tomatoes, eggplants, and more. A harvest I haven’t taken part in, however, is cranberries. Perhaps you’ve seen this process. If not, trust me when I say that the photos look like something from out of this world!
Put simply, farmers flood the bogs in which cranberries grow, stir up the water, let the berries float to the surface, and then gather the crop near the side of the flooded field. As far as I can tell, this wild harvesting process is unique to cranberries. The stages of the process, however, may (at least metaphorically) apply to all of us. As we traverse the different seasons of life, we may feel like we’re experiencing one of the four steps above.
Maybe you or your child(ren) are feeling flooded…with pain, frustration, or troubles. Or maybe the deluge has come to an end, but the subsequent stirring has you unaware of which way is up or down. Some of us are in a stage during which the fruit of a prior experience is becoming evident. Others of us are in the midst of a laborious but joyous harvest.
Whichever stage you and your family find yourselves in this Harvest Season, I pray that you’ll be encouraged by the reminder that the Apostle Paul sent to the Galatians so many years ago, just a few lines after outlining the Fruit of the Spirit:
And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.