Barry Bennett

Where is your Sickle?

But when the grain ripens, immediately he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come. (Mk. 4:29)

Could it be that many of us aren’t enjoying the harvests of our giving and serving because we don’t know what it means to ‘put in the sickle?’  From my observation, harvests don’t jump in the truck or run into the barn.  There is labor involved in harvesting and the greater the harvest, the greater the labor.

God’s blessings take many forms.  Some are visible and some are invisible.  Many of His blessings are opportunities that must be seized.  We may not even be aware of all of the harvests of opportunity that have found their way to us because they look like work!

Other harvests might be lost due to our untamed tongue.  “A man’s belly shall be satisfied with the fruit of his mouth; and with the increase of his lips shall he be filled.” (Prov. 18:20)

Did you know that your tongue is not only a source of sowing, but also of reaping?  Recently as I was driving and praying I was asking the Lord about a perceived lack of harvests in my life in some areas.  I guess I was complaining.  The Lord spoke to me and said, ‘that is not my job.’ ‘Harvesting is your job.’  All of a sudden the light turned on in my spirit!  The harvests are all around us if we would but lift up our eyes, open our ears, bless the seed we have sown and then call in the harvests!

Those harvests may take various forms but if we are willing to put in the sickle of our words, our time and patience, abundance will find us.

And let us not grow weary in doing good, for in due season we shall reap, if we do not give up. (Galatians 6:9)

Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, (Eph. 3:20)

Barry Bennett

What is love?

The subject of love can be quite complex. We speak of loving ice cream or cookies and then speak of loving God. We say that we love a person. but we are prepared for love to fade over time.

Human love is often based on the perceived value of the thing or person that is loved. As we all know, people and things change over time. Thus, human love will move on to the newest thing or person that seems of more value than the older thing or person that once was loved. This is the reason for so many divorces. Human love is driven to satisfy its own desires.

God’s love is not based in the attractiveness of the person or thing, but rather it arises in the heart of the Lover regardless of the condition of the one loved. God’s love reaches out to all men and women regardless of their condition, beauty or what they can do for the Lover. It is an unconditional love based on the heart of the Lover (God) that knows no limitations or boundaries.

The Bible declares that God is love and that He so loved us that He sent Jesus to die for us to set us free from sin and death. Is it possible that God’s love can fade over time? Are you valuable enough in His eyes to keep His love from drifting to someone more deserving?

God’s love springs from His heart and is infinite and unwavering. This love does not fade with time. This love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. This Love never fails.

When we measure love in terms of value, we will all come up short. We are all far too aware of our faults and failures. If God only loves the lovely, then we are all at risk. That is the difference between human love and divine love. God’s love is not based upon our value or performance, but upon His integrity and decision to lay down His life for us.

That same divine love now lives in us and is available to give to others. Don’t base your love for others on their value to you, but rather on their infinite value to God.

Barry Bennet