A Time to Sow and a Time to Reap

Another year has started with many uncertainties. But two scriptures have taken my attention.

The first is practical, advising us to invest what God has given us in a variety of ventures being brave in going forward despite difficulty - because we never know which part of our work will yield the best results.  

The second says that God is always at work. He knows what He’s doing, and when His Word is invested in the world, it will change people’s lives.
Please read through these texts as a New Year reflection:

Ecclesiastes 11:1-6 (NLT) - our work

1 Send your grain across the seas, and in time, profits will flow back to you.
2 But divide your investments among many places, for you do not know what risks might lie ahead ...
4 Farmers who wait for perfect weather never plant. If they watch every cloud, they never harvest.
5 Just as you cannot understand the path of the wind or the mystery of a tiny baby growing in its mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the activity of God, who does all things.
6 Plant your seed in the morning and keep busy all afternoon, for you don’t know if profit will come from one activity or another—or maybe both.

Isaiah 55:8-11 (NLT) - God's work

8 My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts, says the Lord. And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.
9 For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.
10 The rain and snow come down from the heavens and stay on the ground to water the earth. They cause the grain to grow, producing seed for the farmer and bread for the hungry.
11 It is the same with my word. I send it out, and it always produces fruit. It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it.

In other words, we have the responsibility to work with God - courageously investing our time, energy, money and prayer into the work of God’s gospel mission. We do the best we can with the wisdom and strength that we have, but only God knows when and where He will produce the fruit.
But ...
Some will not start to invest in case it fails.
Some will not complete their work because they are frightened.
Some will not do anything until they understand everything.
Ecclesiastes 11:4-5 rebukes them all as being faithless.

However, Christians who trust the Lord make decisions and plans knowing that as they are working, God has already been working. He will use their work to place His Word into the eyes and ears and into the hearts of many who He is growing to be like Christ. He is making human investment profitable in His divine kingdom.
Your work in praying is as significant as ours and our partners in writing, printing, publishing, and distributing Christian literature. Many people will receive God’s Word through BeaconLight but we know that He will be at work in many places throughout the world to produce the changes that He intends to bring blessing to people and glory to Himself.

Most of the time, we in BeaconLight have no idea what God is doing in the many thousands of people who receive our books, emails, Apps or on the web. But God does! As we cooperate with Him, His Word arrives at the right place and time for Him to use it to turn people from darkness to light, growing them up into Christ and becoming like Him.

And the same is true wherever you live and work. Make this year a time to boldly invest what the Lord has given you, and trust Him to use it powerfully in His will and time.

© Dr Paul Adams