Every farmer knows you’ll never reap a harvest if you don’t activate your tractor. You can sit on your tractor all day, but until you start the engine and drive, you’re going nowhere. This is kind of like your faith. If you don’t put your faith into action, you’ll harvest nothing.
In 2017, I was a part of sending a tractor to Africa. Honestly, I can’t take any credit for this miracle. The Good Lord and a lot of wonderful people made it happen. But there are a few things I did that made a difference. First and most importantly, I took God at his word and activated my faith.
“I will look toward the hills, where does my help come from, my help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth,” Psalm 121:1. I prayed this scripture as I drove to town that very first morning to meet with a local agency about donating a tractor. “Lord, you made the heavens and the earth. Getting a tractor to Africa is easy for you. I’m counting on you to make this happen if you want it to happen.”
Seven months later, a tractor was headed for Sierra Leone. It wasn’t easy. There were setbacks and struggles and days we didn’t think it would ever happen, but each time we hit an impossible roadblock, we hit our knees and prayed for God to make it possible. And he did.
Along with the tractor, a shipping container full of clothes, shoes, books and baby supplies made it to Sierra Leone. I don’t want to embarrass Anna and John Gaiser because they are precious, humble people, but Anna came to our farm one morning with her vehicle full of boxes. She shared with me that in one of these boxes was her son’s little green baby shirt. She hated to part with this tiny shirt that meant so much to her but felt God calling her to give it to an orphan in Africa.
A few months later, the Gaisers lost everything in the Loma Rica wildfire. “That little green shirt would have burnt up had I kept it. I’m so glad I sent it to Africa,” said Anna.
I cried when Anna shared her story with me. Anna had activated her faith and not only was something very precious to her saved, it was shared with a child in need. And because of the generosity of the Gaisers, five churches in Sierra Leone also received Bibles.
Do you need to activate your faith today? Is God asking you to do something beyond your ability to do?
“Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:7-9.
If you’re a Christian, I’m sure you’ve heard Joshua 1:9, “be strong and courageous… for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” This is a wonderful promise. But there is an activation part of this promise that you must do. You must be careful to obey the law, which is the Bible. God says you must meditate on the Bible day and night and do everything written in it.
If you don’t meditate on the Bible and do what it says, God does not promise to be with you. You may own a Bible like most farmers own a tractor. But if a tractor is never activated, it does the farm no good.
The Bible is full of these kinds of promises. I call them activation promises. Because you don’t get the promise unless you activate your faith and do what the Bible tells you to do. First, you must believe and then you must act. This reminds me of farming.
These days everyone seems to love farming, but obtaining a harvest is hard. It involves a lot of sweat. And it starts with faith. Farmers put their hope in the land producing, the weather permitting, the water supply providing. So many things about farming are out of a farmer’s control.
Will rain come? Will the trees grow? Will frost or fierce rain hit the bloom? Last year a big rain storm in February wiped out all of our early pluots. We didn’t get any June pluots because pounding rain destroyed the blooms. Fortunately, our peach trees gave us a great crop and for the first time ever at West Butte Orchards, we had cherries to sell, which made up for the loss of our early pluots.
I want to encourage you to activate your faith today. Study the Bible. Take God at his word. And then do what the Lord tells to do in the scriptures. The harvest you will receive will overwhelm you.