Jesus never ceases to amaze me. Tonight, while studying a chunk of Matthew 9, I ran across the following:
35)And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction. 36)When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. 37)Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; 38)therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”
I broke into tears.
I have always heard these verses out of context; I was told that v 37-38 were a call for Christians to go convert non-believers to Christianity. That’s not what He was talking about here. He’s saying, “These people need what we have. Pray that more will come that will give hope and healing.” I prayed immediately to be one of these “laborers” that will be able to minister to the needs – all the needs – of those around me.
Jesus didn’t use a “turn or burn” altar call, and He wasn’t advocating one here saying, “The harvest is ready, get the grain into the silo before it is destroyed!” He was saying, “The time is right. We are needed. We need to increase our numbers to adequately minister to their needs.” Jesus lead with a message of hope, He offered healing, He lived love.
Please, Father, let me be the Jesus someone needs today, tomorrow, and every day hence forth.