It is no more our ability to convince anyone that JESUS is Who HE is than it is our ability to cause a plenteous harvest to come in. Another word for debating is argumentative and this is what we all who have come to CHRIST JESUS either have done or are still doing. I know for a fact that when I was a newborn baby in CHRIST JESUS that I wanted anyone and everyone especially my family to come to know just who CHRIST JESUS is. And, I not only became hurt from my zeal I became angry. By nature I am not a good nor great debater, so often times I gave up because I became exhausted in trying to prove my point of view. It is not that what I was saying was erroneous but my delivery. Ever heard that one bad apple will spoil the entire bunch? Well, those are the people whose heart was not trying to hear about JESUS. My being zealous was not GOD’s perfect timing for me to witness about CHRIST. And throughout my forty years of growing up in HIS presence, I have learned to listen out for HIS voice to prompt me to speak with whom HE desires me to speak with not at.
Every farmer knows when the crops are ripe for harvesting as for me I only know that I see something that looks like it is ready to be eaten only to find out the hard way that what it looked like outwardly does not mean that it is ready inwardly. It is the same with people, they must become ripe for the harvest before being approached.
I can recall when my mother sat us, kids (all teens) down and tried to share with us about her conversion. We did not know what she was talking about and none of us dared to ask her. As for me, I thought that when she said that she was saved that maybe someone pushed her out of the way of a moving car. Her explanation left us all confused but I believe that all of us hid in our hearts what she had said to us because as for me one year later I received the gift of salvation. And my siblings received their gift as well, it hit us all one year after the others like falling dominoes.
As I was becoming ripe for the harvest I can remember how whenever it was my turn to clean the kitchen after dinner on Sunday’s, how I would turn the radio on to what I used to call it Church music and it was not music that I was used to listening to like Mahalia Jackson, the Five Blind Boys, and others which I did and do like. Mainly because that was really all the gospel music that was played in the homes of people either from the radio or their record players. No, this was music from the Mighty Clouds of Joy, The Hawkins and others who had recorded music for my Motown ears to enjoy. My favorite song was that by Tramaine Hawkins “Going up yonder”. I never understood what many of those songs truly meant, I just know that I enjoyed them and I found myself singing them during the weekdays from time to time. Also, I had never felt the way I did as I did when listening to those songs. GOD was preparing my heart. After my conversion when I listened to those very same songs they came across as new because I was able to understand their meaning. And Going up yonder has remained my all-time favorite contemporary Christian song to date.
Most of us may or may not ever know the time when GOD was preparing us for the harvest. And that is okay if some of you do not recall when the preparation was happening. If you are truly a born-again believer in CHRIST JESUS now, it does not matter when our heart was being prepared for HIM to be invited in. What matters most is that we invited HIM in to live, clean, open up all the doors and windows to allow the light to shine and deodorize and disinfect each room of our heart.
There will always be someone who is ripe to be harvested, we just need to be in the right place at the right time listening and obeying the voice of the Holy Spirit when He let us know who to speak with. Remember this from the LORD GOD; “As long as the world exists, there will be a time for planting and a time for harvest. There will always be cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night”. What this means to us is that until the day CHRIST comes to collect everyone who believes in HIM, we and the generations to follow will have the opportunity to either plant seeds (tell the truth about the finished works of JESUS to those who may never have heard about HIM but are not ready to surrender). Water seeds (remind or add on to what people may have heard but have not surrendered as yet to JESUS). Then harvest those which are ripe so that GOD will get the increase (ready to invite JESUS into their heart). The seed is the Word of GOD, the watering is speaking with those who are familiar with the truth of the finished works of JESUS but have not surrendered as yet. And, lastly, those that have become ripened will begin to come to GOD through CHRIST JESUS once they have believed in their heart and have that inner desire to confess just who CHRIST JESUS is. This will be the added increase in our heavenly family. And GOD’s glory is continual on the earth. Just as we have the assurance that the four seasons will come and go and that day will turn into night and night will become a new and never experienced day.
Know your audience; meaning do not try to speak eloquently because you are well educated. And do not dumb down your intelligence when speaking with one who has an education. Meet people where they are, do not approach people of the streets wearing your finest jewels and clothing, wear casual clothes as if you are just making a quick run to the store. And do not approach those that are wearing nice attire and you look like you are not in their league. People respond much better to these groups: Those that run in the same circle as they do but may not indulge in all the activities; those whose lives they have witnessed being changed; those that have been where they are but have been delivered; those that have developed a relationship with others to cause an open door conversation about JESUS more through actions verses speaking to them. And there may be other groups which can be added but I just wanted to layout for those who may be trying to win others to CHRIST that they are not the only ones who may be hitting the ball but fouling out. At least they tried as I did. Learn to become sensitive to the Holy Spirit then move out and speak when He directs not before.
If you have a desire to win souls to GOD through CHRIST JESUS, pray that you hear the voice of the Holy Spirit directing you to those who are ripened. And ask the LORD GOD to send those of us to the orchards that have ripened harvest to gather for HIM. The harvest could be just outside your door, in your home, school, place of employment; at the department stores, in the grocery or corner bodega, at the bus stop, rail /subway station and so on. We do not know when or where GOD will use us to gather HIS children to lead them into becoming HIS sons. Just be available, ready and willing to go and do without any fear.
John 4:35 “They are already ripe for harvest”.
Gen. 8:22; Mt. 9:37; Lk. 10:2