A New Way

Posted by: in Uncategorized on June 23rd

 

Imagine with me a land that is carpeted with one field after another. As you drive down the road you see field after field. Some are destined to be corn fields while others will be bean fields, but it is too early to tell what the fields will be for it is still early spring. There are still pockets of snow hidden under the shade of the sparse trees. But as the season moves on, so too does the snow. As the fields begin to be worked, you can smell the fresh dirt as the farmers begin to till the ground for another year of planting. As spring approaches the seeds begin to burst forth and form new plants that will be used to feed people in all corners of the land.

This land seems so peaceful, yet it is riddled with a history of conflict. Conflicts from years ago are still affecting the families of the land today. There are hurts that were never healed, sins that were never atoned for. The hurts of the land lead the people of this fertile land further away from the peace they so long for. They begin to search for peace in their relationships, yet all they find is heartache. They search for it in their work, yet all they find there is frustration. They begin to search for the peace, that they crave more than anything, in the darker places. While these places give them the allusion of peace they crave for a tantalizing moment, ultimately it takes them so far from peace that they fear it is lost forever.

The people of this land of plenty begin to feel like the people of nothing. That peace that they once sought out so ferociously is now nothing more than a distant memory. They begin to believe that this life of dysfunction they are living is the most peace they will ever have. The life of partying on the weekends, gossiping at work, and jumping from one relationship to the next when that “magic spark” dies is all that they are meant for, so they believe.

It is to this land that we have been called, this land of harvest that is filled with the broken. It doesn’t matter what your age is, God has called you to reach out and begin to help. The Bible doesn’t say everyone that is over thirty goes and teaches the gossip. It just says to go. It is a command for all.

But it’s hard to go and love your neighbor as yourself, to go and make disciples, to go and work the fields when there is no love for the work. Without love for the land that you are in you will never be able to effectively help those that are around you. There are people all around you crying out for just a taste of what you have, but because you don’t love they may never taste and see that the Lord is good.

Loving your neighbor as yourself doesn’t mean you must do everything for that person. It simply means that you extend grace to that person instead of judgment. Instead of judging the man on the side of the road begging you begin to nourish his body and soul. It means being a friend to those without a friend. Instead of judging the person who smells like he hasn’t showered in weeks, you sit with him and get to know his story and share your own testimony with him.

By falling in love with the land you are able to reach out to the people that are all around you. You are able to begin to pull people out of dysfunction and pain as you lead them to the source of all peace. So I challenge you to begin to fall in love with your land in a new way. Begin to pray for your land in a way that you never have. Begin to work the harvest of your land in a way you never thought you could. When you begin to do that there will be healing for your land. When you begin to love as God loves you will see what you thought was an empty field as a field that is overflowing with milk and honey.

 

Akilah lives in South Dakota, where the winters are cold and the summers are beautiful. She works in a one-room school teaching kindergarten through 8th grade. In addition, she works alongside her husband to help minister to the children and families of Watertown, SD. In her spare time, she enjoys taking her dog for walks in the country and curling up with a good cup of tea and an even better book.

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