Workers are few!
Scripture reading for January 11th: Matthew 9:18-38
Farmers know the pressure when the crops are ripe and the weather is just right for harvesting. I speak from years of experience in raising grain on an Iowa farm. Farmers know that the window of opportunity is narrow and they must make haste before the storm comes and ruins the ripe grain. An urgency and focus comes upon them that even deprives them of their desire to eat until their task is finished and the precious grain is in the barn.
“Jesus went through the towns and villages, teaching the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. When He saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. As the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into the harvest field.” (Matthew 9:35-38)
Jesus came to earth with a mission to seek and save lost sinners. He likened them to ripe grain, ready to harvest. He quickly went into the harvest field healing the sick and delivering those who were demon possessed. His compassion and power drew large crowds of hurting and hungry people. Jesus was moved by their needs like a shepherd would care for his own sheep. He spoke to His disciples about the harvest and the need for more workers. Prayer for workers must be made to the Lord of the harvest in order to solve this problem.
Prayer is conversation with God and listening to God for an answer. When we ask, then we wait for instructions or the answer. As these disciples asked for the laborers, Jesus was sending them out as the answer to that prayer! “He called the twelve disciples to Him and gave them authority to drive out spirits and to heal every disease and sickness.” “Go to the lost sheep of Israel”. (Matthew 10:1, 6) This specific prayer for laborers is often neglected by the followers of Jesus. We have now been sent into the whole world to every nation. Today there is a ripe harvest and a time of opportunity and workers are needed to gather it in with urgency! Will you pray and respond to the Master?