When I was a child my daddy farmed his land with equipment that would be considered primitive by today's standards. Nevertheless I remember the excitement of harvest season. Sometimes I would get the chance to go along to the field and sit atop a small wagonload of corn or soybeans as it waited to be unloaded in turn. The grain filled my shoes and pockets as I felt its slick surfaces slide through my fingers.
Farmers wait expectantly with patience for the crops to mature. It is a wonderful time of year when farmers finally reap the harvest they sowed months before and cared for all summer long. Fields are filled with crunchy brown crops that are ready for harvest.
"I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest" (John 4:35b NIV).
I love watching the huge machines slowly glide over the crops like a vacuum eating them cleanly off the soil as the heavy cloud of dust hovers over and around the combine. Their silhouettes look like dinosaurs creeping along the horizon or in the dark like UFOs that have suddenly landed with their blinking lights.
The crisp air is heavy with dust as the tractors and wagons carefully follow the huge beasts across the fields, ready with perfect timing to transfer a load and transport it to a waiting semi tractor or nearby bin. It's a far cry from the harvests I experienced as a child. But the blessing of a bountiful harvest is still the same joyous occasion.