By Jonathan Cowan
Do you not say, 'There are yet four months, then comes the harvest'? Look, I tell you, lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest. (John 4:35)
Harvest comes early in Northern Maine and Western New Brunswick. In August the potato fields are full of white flowers, indicating an abundant harvest to come. Almost every fall this presents a great challenge. The local ads ask for laborers. Time is of the essence, the harvest plentiful and the laborers few. Jesus is describing a similar idea about evangelism. In another place Jesus states:
The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. (Luke 10:2)
It is interesting to note, as Jesus is describing fields white for harvest, where he is located. He is neither in Jerusalem nor his hometown. Jesus is in Samaria. He is speaking of a people long despised by the Jews. Why is Jesus there? John 4:4 states Jesus had to go to Samaria. Humanly speaking Jesus did not, but divinely speaking he had to, for the fields were white for harvest. The harvest was among the despised. So often we can get fixated on our “target audience,” that we do not lift our eyes to see our savior’s call. The fields are white for harvest. The despised, the down trodden, the immigrant, the “enemy” are all in that field. Our unfriendly neighbor, our uncomfortable relative, our friend at work, the one from the wrong side of the tracks could be in that field. The challenge, according to Christ, is never finding the harvest. It is going into the fields. The fields are white for harvest. Will you go?