Copyright (c) May 1972 by The Children of God
P.O. Box 31, London WC2E 7LX, England or GPO Box 3141, San Juan, Puerto Rico 00936
“LIFT UP YOUR EYES, AND LOOK ON THE FIELDS; FOR THEY ARE WHITE ALREADY TO HARVEST!” … “THE HARVEST TRULY IS PLENTEOUS BUT THE LABOURERS ARE FEW; PRAY YE THEREFORE THE LORD OF THE HARVEST, THAT HE WILL SEND FORTH LABOURERS INTO WILL SEND FORTH LABOURERS INTO HIS HARVEST.”–JOHN 4:35; MATTHEW 9:37,38.
1. MY PRECIOUS CHILDREN; GREETINGS IN JESUS’ DEAR NAME! We are now approaching a state of emergency which years ago I warned you would come sooner or later if we did not spend more time training leaders! We are nearing an urgent condition now, as a result of our lamentable lack of leaders who are well trained and qualified, which is already beginning to seriously hamper our efforts to reap the great Harvest of the youth of this world, which are already ripe unto harvest, but the labourers are few!
2. IT MAY SURPRISE YOU TO KNOW THAT THE GREATEST NEED IS NEVER THE HARVEST! The harvest is always truly plenteous somewhere! There is always some Harvest that is ripe unto harvest and it’s always more than the labourers can handle!–Jesus said so! It’s the labourers who are always few! We will never run out of work to do, witnessing to be done, souls to be witnessed to, lives to be harvested for the Master, the Lord of the Harvest! They will always be plentiful and ripe in some fields. This may be a shock to you, but the Harvest is not greatest need!
3. THE GREATEST NEED, AS JESUS SAID, IS LABOURERS–real hard workers of which there always seem to be precious few, especially of good capable labour leaders–leaders and supervisors of the labour crews! The need for those who can competently locate the harvest and supervise its effective and efficient reaping and proper storage and care, threshing winnowing and protection is always the most serious and urgent need, and the shortage of such labour leaders who not only know how to harvest and reap and witness and win souls prayerfully care for and prepare the precious grain and the seed for further Harvests for planting, growing, watering, fertilizing, weeding, pruning, and protecting is always the greatest shortage–Who can not only reap, but manage the reapers, who can not only labour, but lead the labourers–This is our greatest need!–Jesus said so!
4. “THEREFORE,” THE LORD COMMANDED, “PRAY YE THE LORD OF THE HARVEST, THAT HE WILL SEND FORTH LABOURERS INTO HIS HARVEST!” This is one of the few prayers Jesus ever commanded us to pray!–To pray for labourers, the greatest need of all in His Harvest fields so white was His own urgent command as He knew the need so well!
5. THIS SHOULD, THEREFORE, BE OUR MOST EARNEST PRAYER, THAT THE LORD WILL HELP US TO PREPARE MORE LABOURERS FOR THE TASK. He did not say to pray for a greater Harvest, for the Harvest always is plenteous somewhere. There will always be plenty more souls to be won, but the need for more labourers and labour leaders to do and lead this labour of Love will always be the greatest!–Jesus said so. He said there were few, and it seems there always will be compared to the immense magnitude of the plenteous Harvest! Where does it say to pray for souls?–No, Jesus said to pray for labourers!
6. THE NEED FOR LABOUR LEADERS IS EVEN GREATER! Because we have obeyed His Word and faithfully preached His Message of Forsake All and Follow Me and I will make you Fishers of Men, and we have faithfully prayed for the labourers, the Lord has sent them to us by the thousands! We have more real labourers, more real witnesses, more real full-time disciples who have forsaken all to follow Jesus, more real soul winners who are really harvesting the youth of the world and going into all the world to preach the Gospel, and getting more results, garnering more grain, and caring for it in more barns, than any other group in the Jesus Revolution that I know of!
7. GOD HAS BOTH BLESSED US WITH AN ENORMOUS HARVEST AND MULTITUDES OF WORKERS, AND WE ARE GETTING THE JOB DONE! But we are desperately in need of good labour leaders who can properly lead and supervise and tend the many little teams of harvesters which are now scattered around the globe thousands strong in hundreds of fields with many barns! This has, and always will be the greatest need: labour leaders!
8. GOD HAS TAUGHT US HOW TO TAP HIS GREAT RESERVOIR OF LABOURERS and He has sent them into the fields in answer to our prayers and He is helping them reap a mighty Harvest, but they are still short of leaders! There are always plenty of sheep, but so few shepherds to guide them and care for them, protect them and lead them and teach them to produce more lambs for His Folds. The greatest need is for more shepherds and shepherdesses and undershepherds and undershepherdesses to lead and care for the flocks–the many many flocks that God has given us and the multitude more that He is going to give us! Are you one of them!
9. A FEW YEARS AGO I TOLD YOU THIS WOULD HAPPEN! I told you if we did not spend more time now training leaders instead of bringing in more sheep, we would soon reach this state of emergency in which we would not have enough shepherds to care for all the flocks. As of this moment we now have more flocks, or colonies than we then had people or shepherd trainees–and that was less than two years ago! I warned you then, if we did not spend more time training leaders and kept bringing in more sheep, we would soon not have enough shepherds to care for them all!
10. BUT SOME WERE MORE INTERESTED IN GETTING INTO THE FIELDS THAN THEY WERE IN TRAINING THE LABOURERS WE ALREADY HAD, more interested in witnessing with all of its excitement glamour and glory and the rejoicing of the returning with arms loaded with sheaves than they were in the slow, tedious, painstaking, plodding, planning, teaching, training, and preparation of the labourers we already had so that we could reap an even greater harvest in the future! They were more concerned with tiny little immediate present and its joys and immediate results, more interested in instant disciples, than in future leaders and God’s great and glorious Future for the youth of the whole world!
11. SO THEY RAN OFF HELTER-SKELTER INTO THE FIELDS, REAPING HAPHAZARDLY, casting the grain carelessly into the garners, not even making sure it was properly protected or well cared for, much less prepared as seed for future harvest, and dashed off again to gather in more than they could care for! I warned you of this at the time, but very few of you paid any heed! I warned you that the Harvest would soon be so great and the well-trained labourers so few that we would soon be up against a world-wide emergency if we didn’t slow down our expansion and gaining of new disciples, and take more time to train the ones we already had to be the leaders of the future!
12. BUT NO, SOME OF YOU WERE MORE INTERESTED IN EVANGELISING THAN PASTORING, more interested in harvesting than preparing seed for much mightier Harvests of the future! You were more interested in your flocks bearing more lambs than feeding and strengthening them to care for the lambs they already had and those they would have in the future!
13. SO NOW HERE WE ARE ALREADY IN THE FUTURE I WARNED YOU OF then, with thousands of lambs coming into our Folds and many more lambs begging for new folds and we don’t even have enough good shepherds and certainly not enough shepherdess to care for the ones we already have! May God forgive us for not heeding His warning of yesteryear which has caught us so unprepared for today’s tomorrow and tomorrow’s today!–For today is the tomorrow we dreamed of yesterday! And we are now suffering the results of our negligence!
14. WE HAVE TODAY MULTITUDES OF NEW LITTLE LAMBS PRESSING INTO THE KINGDOM, crowding into our Folds and new Folds springing up all over the world with more little lambs, the newborn who need our tender, loving care and who are pitifully bleating for mother and father sheep and under shepherds to care for them! But we were too busy in yesteryear trying to see how many new lambs we could get, how fast we could grow, and how many new new folds we could establish!–We were too busy then to heed the voice of our Great Shepherd that we must train the ones that we already had to prepare for a much greater expansion in the future! So the future is now here and we are already suffering an acute shepherd shortage; in this case, not as much a labour shortage as a shepherd shortage!
15. WE HAVE NO UNEMPLOYMENT IN OUR KINGDOM, thank God, and we have more work than we know what to do with, more jobs to be done than we have people to fill them. But sad to say though the Harvest is so plenteous we have more labourers than we have leaders to lead them. God has supplied the Harvest and is even supplying the labourers abundantly because of our prayers and obedience, but we have failed to train sufficient leaders so that we are now experiencing not so much a lack of labourers as a lack of labour leaders! Are you going to be one?
16. WE HAVE ALSO RECENTLY EXPERIENCED SUCH A POPULATION EXPLOSION AND TERRITORIAL EXPANSION AS HAS SELDOM BEEN SEEN IN ALL CHURCH HISTORY from so few to so many in such a short time, from so near to so far and in so many places! So this has made the situation even more acute and the need even greater! And we are even less prepared for it now than we were then! We are short of leaders, short of literature, short of pioneers, short of inspirationalists, short of secretaries, short of bands, short of transportation, short of translators, short of women, short of nurses, short of midwives, short of provisioners, short of mechanics, short of equipment, and short of almost everything but sheep, which there are still plenty of and more to come, but we are poorly prepared for them! May God forgive us for not heeding His warnings and not spending more time training the sheep we had to be bellwethers, or leaders!
17. IN CASE YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT A BELLWETHER IS, IT IS A STRONG LEADING SHEEP WHICH THE OTHERS ALWAYS FOLLOW AND WHICH ALWAYS FOLLOWS THE SHEPHERD!So a bell is hung around its neck so the other sheep will hear it and always know where it is so they can follow it–and it always follows the shepherd, so this helps keep the whole flock together. Are you a bellwether? Do you follow the shepherd and lead the sheep to follow Him! If so, you’re a great help your shepherd!
18. WELL, THAT’S OUR MAJOR PROBLEM! Now are you ready for the solution? And will you be willing to heed it this time, instead of dashing off in your own wisdom and leaning on your own understanding and running ahead of the Lord in witnessing too much and winning too many souls as you did before and not taking time to train them?
19. THE LACK OF SUFFICIENT LEADERS AND QUALIFIED ELDERS AND TEACHERS IS SAID TO BE THE GREATEST DEFICIENCY OF THE MODERN JESUS MOVEMENT! It is certainly our greatest lack, but, for your encouragement, if you think we’re bad off, you should hear about some of the rest of them! Many Christian communes are closing for lack of leadership and many of theirconverts are drifting back into the oblivion of the System for lack of proper care! May God forbid that this should ever happen to us!
20. HOWEVER, TOO MUCH OF THIS HAS ALREADY HAPPENED TO US: We have not had to close colonies for lack of leadership, but we have been unable to open many new ones which we could have if we had trained leaders for the task. And our percentage of backsliders has been rising of late, and I attribute this directly to lack of proper care of these poor little sheep because of the lack of good diligent shepherds to care for them! This is tragic!
21. FURTHERMORE, WE HAVE MANY CALLS FOR HELP and more open doors in more countries than we have had the leaders to fill them, although there have been plenty of sheep willing to follow! This is heart-breaking, for sometimes opportunity knocks but once, and if we do not strike while the iron is hot, the door closes and the reception cools and the summer passes, and they are not saved! Some of these have even been forced to turn to others for help since we failed them, and some of them are gone forever! May God forgive us!
22. NOT ONLY HAVE WE BEEN HAVING MORE BACKSLIDERS through lack of competent care, but we have even lost some of our own good potential leaders by trying to push them too fast into positions of heavy responsible for which they were ill prepared, and which so freaked them out that they literally cracked up and quit! We had some good younger leaders who were doing well in positions of lesser responsibilities and even as shepherds of smaller colonies, who, because of the lack of more capable leaders, were pushed into too heavy responsibility and it was too heavy a load for them to bear, and they broke and ran rather than being willing to confess their inability, and unwilling to protest their placement in a job that was too big for them!
23. OTHERS HAVE BEEN SO HEAVILY LOADED WITH SO MANY RESPONSIBILITIES for which they have been so poorly prepared that they have allowed their duties to rob them of sufficient fellowship with the Lord and His Word to obtain the strength they need to keep going, and thus have run into situation they were unable to cope with, made serious mistakes, and even caused some of their followers to backslide!
24. STILL OTHER YOUNG LEADERS HAVE SLACKED UP SO MUCH IN THEIR OWN SPIRITUAL LIVES by allowing too much pressure to be put upon them that they have tolerated the same in their own followers, and this has brought their whole colonies to shame and a pitifully low spiritual ebb and some even serious defects by the Enemy! Brethren, these things ought not to be! We must not overburden these weaker brethren and we must take it easier on them that are weak and try to help them to overcome their weaknesses through His Word, His Power and by His Love, and we must not expect more of them than they are able to bear! The Lord never gives us more than we are able to bear and we must not overladen others.
25. SOME YOUNG LEADERS HAVE FELT SO INCAPABLE, INSUFFICIENT, AND INSECURE THEMSELVES THAT THEY HAVE NOT FELT ABLE TO TRAIN OTHERS to lead. This too shows a lack of maturity in their experienced and training! Some have even become so exhausted through so much study and memorising and overwork and lack of rest that they have almost given up, or have been pressed into making excuses for their failures by defending themselves by charging that much study and memorising were an unnecessary weariness of the flesh and they didn’t need it, they didn’t need the Word, but only needed to be led by the Spirit, which is rank heresy!
26. OTHERS HAVE BECOME WEARY IN WELL DOING, HAVE FAINTED in their minds and hearts, become bored with so many instructions and directions, and so busy with a little here and therethat though seeming successful in running their Colony by at least keeping it alive and managing to survive, that they have not given diligent attention to reading of MO Letters, studying of leadership classes, and memorising scripture so that they have become nothing but another Christian commune of Jesus People who don’t even know what the Revolution is all about! You would hardly recognise them as one of us!
27. STILL OTHERS ARE HAVING SUCH SERIOUS MARRIAGE PROBLEMS that they are unable to give the Work of God the attention it needs and first place in their lives and have proven unable to rule the Church, having been unable to rule their own houses well! This is absolutely unscriptural, to place a main in a position of colony leadership who is unable to lead his own wife and family, and is just as dangerous as being a novice in a position of authority, which is also unscriptural and forbidden by the Word and disastrous to a Colony!
28. AND YET THREE ARE OTHERS WHO, LIKE DEMOS OF OLD, HAVE SIMPLY GONE BACK BECAUSE THEY STILL LOVED THIS PRESENT WORLD, and when the real testing showdown came they proved they were not willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for either their flock or the Lord, and did not love the Lord that much, and therefore deserted their post even in the midst of battle like the hireling that fleeth when the wolf cometh, having no real love for either the sheep or the shepherd, but was only there for the hire or the glory and when the going got rough, he ran!It’s these tests which tell the tale between a good shepherd and an hireling! Which are you?
29. AND THEN, SADDEST OF ALL, THERE ARE THOSE YOUNG LEADERS WHO DO HAVE TREMENDOUS LEADERSHIP POTENTIAL and ability and have already proven their qualifications in positions of real responsibility. But then some careless or thoughtless overseer has mistakenly permitted them to be placed under inferior and incompetent leadership which either did not appreciate their talents or feared their abilities as a threat to their own position, and put the able leader down so badly that he become discouraged, disillusioned in the wisdom of his superiors, and even rebellious against such mismanagement to the point of frustration and sometimes even backsliding! For God’s sake, let’s not destroy the good potential leaders that we do have by such stupid misguidance and misplacement on the part of their superiors! I have told you before that no one who has himself headed a colony successfully or occupied a position of leadership responsibly, should ever be put down under a lesser leader for the sake of some momentary expediency, lest he be wearied and faint in his own mind at your lack of wisdom! God forbid!
30. INCIDENTALLY, THIS WHOLE FALLACY OF NOT NEEDING THE BIBLE, study, or memorisation anymore is nothing new!–It started in the Garden of Eden when Satan said, “Hath God said … ?”–It ain’t necessarily so–you only need to obey the Spirit, not the letter! Well, let me tell you right now Jesus said, “My Words are Spirit and they are Life!”
31. ANYONE WHO GETS TRIPPED OFF INTO THAT OLD FALSE DOCTRINE OF NOT NEEDING THE WORD NOW THAT YOU HAVE THE SPIRIT, and which, as I say, began with the Devil’s lies in the Garden of Eden and is now being recently revived by many members of the modern so-called Charismatic Movement, or “Body” or “Sons of God” or “Latter Reign” or some just plain lazy Pentecostals, is headed for serious trouble with both us and the Lord and should be checked on immediately, reproved, and corrected, and brought to repentance for having endangered the Work of God and led others astray! God will not tolerate such foolishness and we certainly can not have it in any of our colonies or their leaders!
32. NEITHER DO I THINK IT IS BEST FOR UNDER-LEADERS TO BE REQUIRED TO WORK UNDER SUPERIORS WITH WHOM THEY DO NOT GET ALONG WELL and who, if given a choice, would prefer to work under someone else or elsewhere–and they are supposed to have a choice and the right and freedom to choose, if possible, the leaders they would like to work under, the team mates they would like to work with, as well as perhaps the Colony, place, or field in which they would prefer to work!
33. THIS FREEDOM OF CHOICE AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE may sound like news to some of you would-be dictators, but it may surprise you to know that it has always been my own personal policy to practice this from the very beginning, from letting a man choose his own project or field of a service, if qualified, to letting his pick his own team for any special task he has chosen to accept as his assignment.
34. THIS POLICY OF FREEDOM OF CHOICE AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE has worked very well with most of you leaders throughout our years of leadership, and just as you have appreciated it and responded well to it, I should think you would use it as much as possible with your own leaders. And furthermore, I think there needs to be more freedom of choice even amongst your followers, disciples, and members of your Colonies, as to which leaders they prefer to serve under and in what Colonies they prefer to work. We all need a change sometimes!
35. IF A LEADER OR MEMBER SEEMS TO BE DISSATISFIED, DISCONTENTED OR IN NEED OF A CHANGE, you should encourage him to express such a desire and give it your prayerful consideration, and I see no reason why he should not be permitted to transfer if he can be spared or replaced, and the Colony of his choice is willing to accept him.
36. ANOTHER SAD MISTAKE ON THE PART OF SOME IMMATURE LEADERS HAS BEEN A POLICY OF DISCOURAGING PERSONAL INGENUITY AND INDIVIDUAL INITIATIVE of some of their co-workers or subordinates in the matter of certain projects they feel inspired to tackle, promote, or pursue, such as witnessing in a certain area, printing certain literature, reorganising certain work or witnessing team, office or kitchen procedures, meeting programmes, work projects, etc., if within the realm of reason and possibility and not apt to be harmful and could even be beneficial! Some seem to think they even have to get permission and approval from the world overseer to design and print a simple little tract for use in their local field! Please! You local Shepherds should be able to OK these!
37. ALSO, LET ME WARN YOU AGAIN, THAT A GOOD SHEPHERD IS NOT ALWAYS GOING OFF and climbing a tree somewhere to play his own little flute while neglecting the personal supervision and needs of his sheep!
38. AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST, ANY WHO THINK THEY CAN GET BY WITHOUT READING MO LETTERS MAY MISS THE WHOLE POINT OF THE REVOLUTION AND WANDER AWAY from God’s appointed Shepherd and teaching and get lost! Beware! If you want to know what the Lord has revealed to us on how to run His Revolution, you’ve got to read the MO Letters! You’ve got to follow God’s Voice! You’ve got to listen to what He’s told us to do and how to do it, new things we’ve never done before as well as old things we’ve learned by experience. God’s Kingdom has always been directed by prophets, priests, kings, and men of God who acted as His Mouth piece to give the people His Words, and He has chosen one for you and now.
39. BUT, YOU SAY, I HAVE NO NEED OF THE BIBLE OR HIS PROPHET!–HIS TRUTH!–Yes, you’re right!–He will: Through His Word and His Prophets as well as your individual leadings and personal revelations! But to keep His People united and their efforts coordinated and all parts of the Body working well together, God has always chosen a Head–a Leader–His Man of the Hour–HisVoice for the Vision–His Man of faith to send them forth–His Father-Figure to symbolise His own Presence with His People–A Guide and Shepherd for His sheep, and His sheep know His Voice–His Prophet–and they follow Him. This has always been God’s way of leading His People.
40. ALL THE SUCCESSFUL MOVES OF GOD THROUGHOUT TIME AND THE BIBLE WERE LED BY GOD’S CHOSEN MAN FOR THAT TIME AND PURPOSE. Read your Bible and Church History and you’ll see this always has been true. God’s Move is always led by God’s Man who is God’s Voice for God’s Vision–the Voice of His choice–the Vision of His Chosen–whether they liked it or not.–It was God’s Will! It seems most of them didn’t like it and tried to get out of it, but God wouldn’t let them! They had to yield to His Will, mere creatures of the Creator, vessels of His Volition, and tools in His own Hands–a mere part of His Plan!
41. SO YOUR LEADER IS NOTHING BUT AN INSTRUMENT IN THE HAND OF GOD!–The mere Trumpet that carries the Message of His Mouth to His People!–The Communicator of His Words–His Voice–and God’s sheep hear His Voice, the Prophet of God, and they follow Him! They are following God, not the Man. The Man is merely His Manifestation, the Voice of His Vision! God’s Man is nothing but a Wirephoto and Teletype machine, like the news media use, on which they get the latest news in words and pictures! That’s all I am, God’s means of communication: He sends the pictures and the words by turning on my Key on my wavelength, and I, His little machine, simply rattle it off and pass it on to you! It’s just that simple and that easy, crazy as it may seem!
42. BUT IF YOU DON’T READ THE MESSAGE AND GET THE PICTURE, YOU’LL NEVER KNOW GOD’S LATEST NEWS FOR YOU! But if you faithfully read and study these MO Letters–God’s latest news–you’ll be well informed and know exactly how to proceed, with His Plans made plain by His pleasure! And it’ll be a pleasure because it’ll always work, if you do His Will according to theVoice of His Vision through His jolly little old Noisemaker–me! That’s just the way it is!–The way God made it!
43. SO HOW YOU THINK YOU CAN DO THE MASTER’S WILL WITHOUT THE MASTER’S PLAN, I DON’T KNOW! I certainly couldn’t! And how you think you can just wander off and do your own thing without listening to His chosen Voice and following Him, without getting lost, I don’t understand! His sheep know His Voice and they follow Him, and a stranger they will not follow! How do you think you can get by and carry on His Word and follow His Plan and accomplish His Purpose without listening to His Voice and heeding His advice in the Epistles of His Prophet? You can’t! It’s impossible! You can’t get along without God, you can’t do His Work without His Will, you can’t follow without listening, and you can’t accomplish anything without obeying His Words, His Voice, through His Prophet!
44. NO GREAT KING, LIKE GOD, WOULD EVER THINK OF SENDING HIS MEN INTO BATTLE WITHOUT A PLAN! And no officer in his right mind would think of defying the orders of his Commander-in-Chief, Who knows the Master plan! And what foreman of a factory would send his workers in to operate those expensive machines without giving them careful study and training in their operation? Would he think of hiring help indiscriminately and just say, “Now go make cars, Boys!”–without any plans, and blueprints, or any training? And what country would recruit soldiers and merely stick a gun in their hands and shoo them off to the battle without any training or preparation or plan and say, “Now go fight our war, Boys!”–without leadership, without organisation, without strategy, without training, and even without proper equipment and supplies? They’d certainly lose the war, those cars would be piles of junk, and the king would lose His Kingdom! It would be disastrous!
45. WHEN THE GIGANTIC CALIFORNIA CORPORATION, Aerojet General, wanted to make atom bombs for the Government, they hired 16,000 employees to do in one factory alone and a staff of scientists to show them how to do it, and then they hired my brother, a college president with a string of degrees in education, and a staff of over thirty teachers just to supervise the personnel,teach them how to get along with each other, and how to love and obey their employers and their company!
46. GOD HAS GIVEN US A BIG COMPANY AND A GREAT JOB TO DO, “AND GREAT WAS THE COMPANY OF THOSE THAT PUBLISHED IT!”–And He has His Master Plan on how to do it! Each Colony is a little machine, but a very precious and expensive one, designed to produce His Products–good, new disciples for His Kingdom!–A Soul Factory! But we can’t expect to send in untrained labourers with little or no leadership, teachers, or training, to operate these little Colony machines for producing souls! We’ve got to give them more training and more instruction and more apprenticeship experience in how to actually run these Colonies God’s way and the way of His Revolution, His New Nation, in order to produce the best results, the very finest products, the very best disciples, who in turn will be able to produce more!
47. BUT YOU CAN’T DO THIS BY JUST THROWING A BUNCH OF KIDS TOGETHER IN A COLONY WITHOUT GOOD LEADERSHIP, a good teacher, a good inspirationalist, a good example, and good helpers and samples, and still expect them to turn out as good products! In fact, it will be miracle if they turn out at all, or even survive the ordeal! We’ve got to give them more and better leadership who really love and care for them, and really want to help and see them make it! That’s the only way God’s Work is going to be able to carry on, and that’s the only way we’re going to be able to accomplish what God wants us to do!
48. LET’S SAY YOU HAVE 100 ACRES TO REAP, BUT ONLY TEN LABOURERS to reap it by hand. Let’s say that each labourer, at his best, can only reap about an acre per month, or ten acres in ten months by picking the grain by hand, grain by grain. So it would take you ten months with the ten labourers, to reap your 100 acres, wouldn’t it?
49. BUT WHAT IF, INSTEAD OF BEING SO IMPATIENT AND WANTING TO SHOVE THEM OUT IN THE FIELDS IMMEDIATELY without tools and training because you’re such a hurry to reap the harvest, you decide to have a little patience and faith instead, and use a little wisdom, and you, an experienced reaper with a good scythe, decide to take a little time out to show them how to make scythes and how to use them, so they can each reap an acre a day, after a month of preparation? Which would be faster?
50. INSTEAD OF RUSHING OFF HALF COCKED IN YOUR HURRY TO GET INTO THE FIELDS AND GET THE HARVEST REAPED, in a scatter-brained, haphazard, disorganised, untrained, and ill-equipped fashion, and thereby taking ten months to reap the harvest, by a little thought, planning, patience, training, preparation, and better supplies and equipment, though you couldn’t start reaping the harvest today, you do get into a month from now with a better more experienced team and better tools, and get the harvest reaped actually much faster and more efficiently in the long run!
51. “TIME SPENT SHARPENING THE SCYTHE IS NOT TIME LOST!”–is a good slogan for every reaper! The picture is of the labourer sitting down in the shade of a tree during the heat of the day to sharpen his sickle so he can actually cut the grain easier and faster afterward. As the old saying goes, “Haste makes waste!”–And that is certainly true! By being in too big a hurry and botching the job it can actually take you longer that by slowing it down and doing it right! Remember, “Squeeze, Don’t Jerk!” Read it again! And “Stop, Look, and Listen!” We need them both! As my wife used to say when hurrying to an appointment, “Please, Honey, we don’t have time to take any shortcuts!” And as Ho used to have posted on his dashboard: “The hurrier I go the behinder I get!”The same is true of our training!
52. THE CHURCHES HAVE GONE TO THE OPPOSITE EXTREME: They spend so much time and effort and money to train a leader, that, by the time he’s finished, he hasn’t much time or strength left to do the job! He’s lost his fire, he’s forgotten what he joined the Army for, and he spends most of his time fixing watches!–(As you my remember the story from a former MO Letter.) Besides, the churches’ soldiers and leaders are not trained to attack the Enemy in an all out offensive warfare to gain new territory and conquer new subjects for their King, but simply to “Hold the Fort!” and try to keep the little territory they already have from being wiped out by a very aggressive Enemy! So they’re losing the War!
53. BUT OUR ARMY IS TRAINED TO ATTACK AND NOT RETREAT! But we might learn something from the churches on how to told the forts we already have by preparing their leaders with better training for their task! We’ve learned how to attack, we know how to witness and win souls, and we’re experts on persuading them to join the Army and come live in our forts. But we have yet to learn how to better hang onto them! Over fifty percent of our gains have become losses! This may equal the Communists’ strategy of “Two steps forward and one step backward,” but that’s too slow for us because we’re so far behind them! We can’t afford to lose those precious steps we’ve gained! We need to make it three forward without these stumbling losses!
54. SO TAKING TIME OUT NOW TO GIVE BETTER TRAINING, preparation, and tools to our labourers and their leaders is not time lost, but actually time gained to keep us from stumbling and bungling the job in the future! “A stitch in time saves nine!” A fence at the edge of the cliff built now will save us from having to dig a graveyard at the bottom later!
55. I WOULD RATHER SLOW DOWN OUR FORWARD MARCH NOW so that we walk more slowly and more prayerfully, without any missteps, than to rush ahead and trip up and fall flat on our faces, so I again suggest these steps:
(1) Spend more time on the disciples you now have, less emphasis on getting so many new ones you haven’t time to train!
(2) Each one teach one to do your job!
(3) Take care of and use our leaders better!
(4) Translate and print more literature!
(5) Study MO Letters!–and mo’ Bible!
(6) Don’t leave post till filled or job till done!
(7) LOVE, TRUST, PRAY, OBEY!
Copyright (c) 1997 by The Family}