When I hear the word harvest, I immediately think of gathering.
Near where I live, farmers have been gathering the last of their grain to store up for the winter to come.
When I read the following scripture, I had to me stop and re-read it, as it wasn’t speaking about my normal thought of what a harvest would be.
“And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.” (James 3:18 ESV)
A “harvest of righteousness.” This expression made me pause to try to understand it more clearly. So I dug farther. I looked up the various definitions of both harvest and righteous.
Harvest – to gain, win, acquire, or use; the result of an act.
Righteous – acting in an upright, moral way, virtuous.
Now as I read the scripture, it meant something different. If I changed the wording a little (not changing the meaning), it taught me that we have a responsibility of harvesting righteousness. Hear me out…
A harvest (or gain, acquiring) of righteousness (by acting in an upright, moral or virtuous way) is sown in peace by those who make peace.
This got me thinking about how we treat others.
Do we act righteously? Do we try to make peace? Or are we quick to critique others, or even attack them for their differences? As we head into this holiday season the hustle and bustle of the holidays can sometimes raise our stress levels. We can become impatient, critical, short or snarky…anyone relate?!
When we do our best to make peace, I believe more peace will be seen in our surroundings. In other words, if you want more peace, you can gather or harvest it by sowing peace to those you have opportunity to be with.
Might I suggest that as November has just begun and our holiday season is coming fast, that we all strive to be harvesters of righteousness? That we make (and keep) peace with those we encounter by acting in an upright, moral or virtuous way each day? And yes, even with that cranky aunt you might get stuck sitting by at the Thanksgiving table this year!
How about you? Will you set out to be a harvester of righteousness with me?
Please let me know in the comments. Let’s encourage each other.
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