Cotton Picking Friends

My dear friend is a farmers wife, and even though I was raised in the south I am always learning something new from her about life on the farm.  On this particular day we met for coffee and prayer as she shared an urgent prayer request with both myself and another friend from Ohio.  Her husband was stressed to the max because it was time to pick the cotton, and he desperately needed another cotton picker.  

After glancing toward my friend from Ohio, we locked eyes for a brief moment and nodded in agreement without even saying a word, as we offered a simple solution.  We would provide not one cotton picker but TWO!  We both graciously offered to be the cotton pickers (I mean how difficult could picking cotton really be?)  Problem solved!  Much to my surprise our friend in need laughed at us openly!  I wasn’t sure whether  I should join in on the laughter or if I should be offended that she did not gladly accept our generous offer.  She then explained that a “cotton picker” is actually an expensive piece of equipment that harvests cotton very efficiently and averages about $100,000 or more!  Oh my!  No wonder she laughed at the two of us.

One person could never make a noticeable difference picking in this field of cotton, but I am so glad that one person CAN make a difference for the Kingdom!  In fact as a child of God we should all be “working the fields” as He commanded us to do.

Matthew 9:35-38 (NKJV)

” Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.   But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd.   Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few.  Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” 

Jesus was compassionate for the people.

Jesus touched the people.

Jesus healed the people.

Jesus loved the people.  Just as He does today.  I would love to tell you that I am as quick to share my faith with and serve others as I was that Fall day I agreed to pick cotton for my friend.   I must admit that my plans sometimes seem more important than what God has planned for that day.  I am probably not alone.

John 4:35 also reminds us of the words of Jesus as he said,Do you not say, ‘There are still four months and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest.”

We do not have to look far to see a sister in need.  Someone who would gladly accept an invitation to attend church but is reluctant to go because she doesn’t know anyone there.  Someone who is overwhelmed with small children at home and could use an encouraging word or compliment or maybe even a free night (or day) of babysitting? Someone who needs to hear that with Jesus all things ARE possible including her marriage.  Someone who needs to simply hear what Jesus has done for you so they too can have hope.

What about you?

Will you decide that today you will choose to be a “laborer” for Christ?  What an honor and joy it is to serve others for His sake!

“Father, thank you for being so gracious to me and gently reminding me of the many needs all around me that I could meet if I were not so busy with my own selfish agenda.  Thank you for giving me eyes to see what you see and a heart that is quick to respond so that others might see a glimpse of you in me.”