The Harvest and Jelly Beans

DownloadedFileMatthew 9:37-38   Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.”

Sometimes Christians can get a negative mind set, where we see the end of the world, doom & gloom, and hopelessness around every corner. Take the above mentioned verse. I’ve heard people utter it as if it were a terrible thing. Imagine a glum, end of the world person, moaning, “The harvest is plentiful BUT the laborers are few. Oh my! What are we going to do? The laborers are few. Then they give a sad shake of their head, kind of like Lurch on the old Adams Family TV show.

Recently, I stopped by at a youth camp to visit some friends of mine. I had the opportunity to sit in on a class. One teen complained about the lack of Christians in his school. “I only know a handful,” he said. Some of the others gave sad shakes to their heads.

First of all, I kind of doubt what he was saying. I’m not calling him a liar, simply misinformed. I will admit, though, that I could be wrong on that.

But, there’s a bigger truth here. Let’s take the teen at his word– There are only a hand full of Christians in his school. There are Christians, all around, who moan and complain about the same thing “I have no Christian friends. Oh, woe is me.”

So what’s anyone doing about it?

Let me try and illustrate a wonderful truth.

I’m going to come visit you and I’m bringing your favorite candy. Let’s say. . . jelly beans. When I visit, you’re planning on having a few friends over. There’ll be five of you, in all. I’m bringing 500 jelly beans. Wow! A lot of candy! Plenty to go around.

Let’s change the scenario. Lets say you have fifty friends coming over. Hey! You’re a pretty popular person. I’m going to bring 100 jelly beans. . . Uh-oh.

Which scenario do you like better? Come on! Admit it. The first. You want to pig out on jelly beans. (Personally I like the black ones. If they’re jelly bellies, my next favorites are juicy pear and root beer. Just in case someone wants to bring me a bag.)

The potential for jelly bean consumption is greater in the first scenario, isn’t it? Five hundred jelly beans and five people?

Let’s look back at Jesus’ words, in light of the potential for working towards the great commission.

The harvest is PLENTIFUL. A lot of people! A lot of potential Christians!! Be excited. There are tons of people who need to hear God’s word!

It’s like I came to your house with a billion ga-zillion jelly beans!

Black ones, juicy pear, tangerine. Even popcorn (though I find something odd about popcorn jelly beans.) Every flavor you could imagine. The jelly bean harvest is great. If the laborers are few, then there’s more for me! Wahoo!!

In spiritual terms, instead of bemoaning the lack of workers, roll up your sleeves. The harvest is great. There is more opportunities for you to shine! More opportunities to have God pronounce, “Well done!” Look to the fields. The potential is incredible. Let’s get to work!

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