Why Waiting for the Harvest is the Hardest

Originally published Monday, 17 March 2014.

This article first appeared on www.prodigalsister.com. You can read more from Brett there, and be sure to follow her on Facebook or follow her on Twitter for the latest updates!

The sky is always darkest right before the sun breaks into it each morning.

Similarly, I am always my craziest/most negative right before spring breaks into the atmosphere.

This is true of me for the weather, of course. But it's also true for this twenty-something stage of life. At least, it is for me.

You see, the early part of your twenties feels an awful lot like the land has been overcast. Not to sound emo, of course, it's just when you need/want the rain to come so that the harvest can hurry up and happen.

The years leading up to your twenties were the planting years. They were the years you spent in school, the years you earned a grade and figured out what you did well. They were when you moved up a grade and even a height level, if you were one of the lucky ones.

{Side note: my 5'4"-self was not one of the lucky ones}

You were going places just by getting older. You had purpose. You had drive.

But then the twenty-something stage happened and the rows we've planted are pretty permanent. It's pretty much up to the harvest now. Elements out of our control dictate how well we'll all maneuver ourselves at the end of the planting season.

And yet, we have to hope that there is something stirring underneath. Underneath the routine. Beneath the tilling and pulling of the dirt that comes with packing lunches, commuting to the sounds of NPR, arriving to the office at 8:45 a.m., and returning home by 5:45 each evening.

There has to be something burgeoning beneath the ground we're tilling, right?


I've heard many of my friends and family call this season the "waiting room."

It makes sense. You see the row before you in the field. You've planted. You've dusted your hands off. You stick them in your overall pockets and you watch.

...Bloom yet?

...Bloom yet?

...Bloom yet?

But, maybe this "bloom yet?"-mentality is something whispered to us from the enemy. I think that sounds like something from him, don't you think? That he would have us believe that we were waiting.

Just waiting.

And maybe, when the sun isn't hanging in the sky one morning, or when the ground has snuggled itself into a cocoon of snow–when we're in this season of not-quite-harvest–we would be tricked into believing that our land was barren.

That because our rows haven't bloomed yet, they won't bloom at all.

This is the trap I've fallen into lately. Into thinking that I'm simply in a "waiting" place. In a room waiting for my number for my calling to be called.

There's a parable about this very same thing in the New Testament book of Matthew: the parable of the talents.

The man who simply sat on his money? Who buried his talent in the field? He waited. He lacked the confidence to work and invest.

And even though he was too afraid to do anything with the talent he was given, he still expected something spectacular to come his way.

Turns out, he was very, very wrong.

I think in this season of lent–a time when many of us let go of something–it would be appropriate to give up the mentality of waiting. To have faith enough in the waiting room to put down our outdated copies of People and Highlights (come on, you still read Highlights) to encourage others. We need to use our gifts, even in the waiting room. Even while we're waiting for the blooms to sprout.

If we're caught in a place where we focus so much on the ground, on our simple plot of faith where we expect our purpose to grow, we miss the sun. We miss the rain. We miss the circumstances and the air around us.

We can forget that we are in a place in our lives, even in our twenties, designed to make us better. We can get wrapped up in stubbornly believing we are born with a purpose and forget that we shouldn't lose faith that nothing will come up out of the ground during harvest time.

Because, while we're waiting, we're growing. 

photo credit: crdotx via photopin cc

photo credit: davespilbrow via photopin cc