Saturday, 2 October 2021

Fruit and Veg

October 2021

Dear Friends

Why would people bring apples, beans, tinned meat, potatoes, or packets of noodles into church, of all places?  Not to feed the vicar.  And certainly not to feed God who needs nothing from us – he is the one who has generously given us food, life and everything else.  People in our village have done this for years and years, piling up produce on windowsills and along pews and steps as a tangible thank-you to God for his kindness.  We have food to eat because God keeps his promise to maintain the seasons and because the risen Lord Jesus continues to sustain everything, every moment of every day, by his powerful command. (Genesis 8:22, Hebrews 1:3)  And so every year we have Harvest Thanksgiving.

Fruit and veg also remind us, Jesus says, that who we are, deep down, will determine what grows in our life.  Oranges don’t grow on apple trees.  If our hearts are far from our loving Creator and we are pursuing our own agenda then that will show.  “Each tree is recognised by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from thorn-bushes, or grapes from briers.” (Luke 6:44)

Jesus and his apostles also tell us that he has the power to so deeply transform us that, miraculously, we do begin to produce a different kind of fruit:  Now the works of the flesh are evident … But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,  gentleness, self-control.” (Galatians 5:19-22)  What a glorious fruit-laden tree that is!!

And, finally, Jesus says that God has given us harvest time so that we never forget his judgment.  Just as every good farmer must separate wheat from weeds or good apples from bad apples, so Jesus must one day separate us from others according to our response to him.  Jesus says, “at harvest time I will tell the reapers, ‘Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.'"  (Matthew 13:30)

Our Harvest Thanksgiving this year is on Sunday 3rd October, and you are very welcome to join us.  Produce to decorate the church can be brought to the church on Saturday 2nd October between 10am and 11am.  After Harvest we will send non-perishables to the King’s Food Bank in Kendal and we will find a good home for the fresh food.


Graham Burrows