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The fields are ripe for harvest

Joh 4:34,35  "My food," said Jesus, "is to do the will of Him who sent me and to finish His work.  Don't you have a saying, 'It's still four months until harvest'? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields!  They are ripe for harvest.  

 

This scene is playing out at Jacob’s well, near the Samaritan town of Sychar. Jesus rested at the well, while the disciples went into the town to get some food. It is worthwhile to remember that the Jews and Samaritans did not really get along. (Even though of common descent, the Jews did not see the Samaritans as of the same heritage. This was due to the mingling with other nations that was settled in Samaria after the Assyrian conquest in approximately 650BC,see 2 Kings 17:24-41 ). 

 

It was still early in Jesus’s ministry and He was already reaching out to “non-Jewish” people. What is interesting to note is that Jesus did not go and look for the Samaritan woman to talk to in this instance. The Samaritan woman came to the well to draw water and she had a chance meeting with Jesus. Jesus engaged her with a number of questions that eventually lead to a whole town being told the good news. 

 

As the disciples came back to the well, they notice that He is talking to the woman. Not one of them said or asked anything about the reason why He would be talking to the woman. Probably becasuse they feared that a question on His behaviour would result in them being engaged in this discussion with the woman also …

 

When she leaves to tell the town of what she just experienced, the disciples offer Jesus some food and then Jesus tells them: "I have food to eat that you know nothing about." 

 

This must have been confusing, as the reason they left Him there was to get food. A few minutes ago Jesus was hungry. So, who brought Him food then? Jesus tells them: "My food is to do the will of Him who sent me and to finish His work”.

 

There is a striking similarity in what happens here and in John 5, when Jesus heals the man that has been an invalid for 38 years. Jesus heals the man on a Sabbath. When confronted by the Jewish leaders (as “working” on a Sabbath was a sin according to Jewish law) He says to them in His own defense, "My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working." He essentially tells them that it was not His choice, He only did what was required of Him in the moment. Jesus also says to the Jewish leaders "Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.”

 

When He met the Samaritan woman, He immediately saw that God the Father was at work inside of her. She was “prepared” for a discussion on the more important things in life. How could Jesus know this? He had the Holy Spirit inside of Him and operated in the Spirit’s power. Through a word of knowledge He probed her personal life and exposed the questions of her heart.

 

Afterwards Jesus makes this statement, “…open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest.” 

 

God the Father is continuously at work in people, preparing them for the right moment when they meet one of His children. To have a discussion as Jesus had with the Samaritan woman.

 

Are we in tune with what the Father is doing around us? Are we sensitive to the Spirit’s leading as we walk through our day? Are we focused on the fields which are ready for harvest?

 

This was the reason Jesus came, it was the example He gave. We are to follow it, but we get tangled up in life and survival and eventually completely forget that what we are busy with daily is temporary, not eternal. Unless we ensure that the “eternal” stays our focus while we are dealing with the temporary realities, we will miss out on the main part of our purpose in life. Our main purpose in life is the know Him, and to make Him known!

 

Lord, make us aware of where You work, as we walk through our day. Give us the privilege to work with You, to experience your love and power flowing through us into needy people. Renew our minds so that we first see the ripe harvest, and only after that the realities that keeps us so busy.  Amen

 

 

"The sun generates a tremendous amount of energy, but it only gives us a warm glow. By contrast, a laser beam that uses a few kilowatts of energy can cut through metal. Such is the power of focus." - S Khosla

 

Most things we see today that makes a significant difference had a small beginning. A long journey starts with the first step… For this reason, we at Eternal Investments decided to focus our initial effort on a specific initiative that we believe are making a significant difference in Africa with regards to missions and evangelisation. In itself it is much more than a program, it is a movement. This excites us, as a movement creates enormous energy and requires little external energy to keep it going.

 

 

This movement was birthed in Nyarugusu Refugee Camp on the borders of Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). It is called Ubabalo. 7 pastors gathered to share their story of how they ended up at the camp. The first pastor recounted how the rebel forces entered his village, lined up his 24 family members from the youngest to oldest - and starting with the youngest they used machetes to amputate and kill. Upon seeing this, the family ran to escape - many lost their lives that day but those that escaped made it to Nyarugusu. To our horror, this same experience was repeated by the 6 remaining pastors, with the only difference being the village of origin and the size of each family. What shocked us further was that the rebels and perpetrators of those atrocities consisted of young men between the ages of 18-19 years old. 

 

We are convinced that many of Africa's challenges are a function of fatherlessness and the deliberate destruction of the family unit. As the strategy of Ubabalo multiplies across the world to over 100 countries, we have now discovered that these challenges are not unique only to Africa. Ubabalo is our courageous attempt to transform worldviews of coaches and players, reverse the trend of fatherlessness, and to catalyze a Whole Life Coaching movement in order to redeem culture and impact nations. (http://ubabalo.tumblr.com

(www.theworldneedsafather.com)

 

 

 

OM Sportlink is a initiative within Operation Mobilisation (https://www.om.org/en/content/about-om) that focus on sport as a vehicle to break down cultural barriers and carry the gospel into areas otherwise difficult to reach. They use the Ubabalo principles to train coaches to disciple young people. We partnered with OM International Sportlink Director, Chris Welman, in support of their ministry. Chris is stationed at the OM base in Kabwe, Zambia and has seen the amazing impact coaches can make in young people’s lives firsthand. They are active in a number of African and other countries. Below is an excerpt of one of their newsletters: