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Bringing in the Sheaves – Joy in the Work of the Lord

By Jerry Ousley

We’ve got a neighbor who should have been a professional gardener. Every year since Deb and I have lived where we do he has put out one of the cleanest and healthiest gardens I have ever seen. Of course it takes a lot of work. I’ve seen the man out in the hot sun, hoeing, pulling weeds, and hilling up his plants while we were in our lawn chairs visiting with friends and sipping on ice tea and lemonade. But I want to tell you that we never refused his offer to share in the fruit of his work. His tomatoes were large, juicy and mmm . . . so good!

We don’t really have to be a gardener to harvest and share the fruit of our work. Many have skills in writing, painting, drawing or maybe even fixing cars. These are tasks some of us are good at and we can share the fruit of our labor with others. Just this past summer in the city of Louisville, KY they were having a festival of some sort and local artists donated their time to do chalk drawings on the concrete floor of the pavilion where the festival was being held. They were exquisite artists and I would have had a hard time walking on their work. They shared it with the community.

I have a brother-in-law who just knows a whole lot about fixing cars and building things. Over the years he has never refused to donate his time and advice to help us and a host of others in getting through their mechanical woes.

All these and a multitude of others have reaped the plenty of their labor in their field of expertise. Some have been able to make good livings from their skills, while others have simply used these talents to benefit others.

It’s the same in the Kingdom of God. He has given each of us talents and skills that are unique. Oh there may be thousands of artists, mechanics, and gardeners in this world but each has their own special way of doing things. They take joy in sharing with others. In the Kingdom of God we have also been given unique talents and skills with which we are to labor in the spreading of the Gospel, and in encouraging believers.

Sometimes it is hard work. We may feel that we will never see fruit on the trees in which we have invested so much. We toil and labor only to see a few dried up nubbins hanging on that tree. Often it just doesn’t seem worth it. But I want to encourage you to hang in there. If God has called you to do what you are doing and you keep on doing it, the day will come when you will wake up one morning, go out to inspect your tree of service and find it hanging full of fruit! The Bible says in Psalm 126:5-6, “Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy. He who continually goes forth weeping, bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.” You will see the day when the harvest will be plentiful.

I want to caution you however on one thing. So many today complain about how hard their service is. They go about with long, sad faces stating that their burden is nearly too heavy to carry. If you find yourself in this position one of two things may be happening: Either you are laboring where you aren’t really supposed too, or you are discouraged because of the lack of fruit. Remember that Jesus said in Matthew 11:30 that His yoke is easy and His burden is light. That means that the work you are called to do, while it may indeed be hard labor and tedious, difficult work, because of the skills and desires God has put in you, it is a joy and a pleasure. This doesn’t mean that it isn’t hard work. But it does mean that it is what you have been cut out to do. It fulfills you. It gives you pleasure to see the finished job and to share it with others. This makes it an easy yoke to wear and a light burden to pull. It makes all the difference in the world.

Hang in there; tough it out. Do what God has called you to do and you will find yourself one day rejoicing on your way home, bringing the sheaves of your service with you.

Jerry D. Ousley is the Author of five books, “Soul Challenge”, “Soul Journey” “Ordeal” “The Spirit Bread Daily Devotional” and his first novel “The Shoe Tree.” Listen to the daily broadcast Spirit Bread. Find out more by visiting http://www.spiritbread.com

or email us at jousley@spiritbread.com

Article Source: http://www.faithwriters.comCHRISTIAN WRITERSMAKE A WEBSITE

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