The Harvest

The first frost of the season arrived last night in Clarkfield. It was a hard freeze, so the gardening season is officially over. Carol took the grand-kids over to the garden yesterday and salvaged what was left, which actually was quite a bit. What a summer it was! We raised lettuce and radishes, snow peas and onions, beets, tons of tomatoes, five or six kinds of beans, a million peppers ranging from green mild to red hot, broccoli and cauliflower, turnips, Brussels sprouts, spinach, carrots (most of which are still in the ground), and giant sunflowers. We also grew kale, which a website says is the healthiest food in the world. Well, the world can have it. Good health to everybody (else)!

The owner of the community garden (where we gardened) kept us supplied first with sweet corn and then squash. Another man from the church invited us to raid his apple tree. Carol canned, froze, dried, and gave away all people would take. And, of course, we ate and ate. I lost very little weight this summer, even though I was super active and didn’t eat much added sugar or dairy.

The other night I walked down to the elevator, which is humming 24-7 right now, and watched the golden corn pouring from the conveyor under the lights onto the massive pile, which is bigger than several houses. I thanked the Lord for the bumper crops the farmers are harvesting; in a broken world it won’t always be like this. I can empathize with the sugar beet farmers who are required to plow under a portion of their crop. The harvest is so huge, government regulations require them to destroy some of it. Apparently there are environmental reasons for this. But I feel for the farmers who can’t even give away their surplus.

It’s a moment for reflection. The farmers are still in the fields working hard to bring in their crops. As they say, it’s not all in the bin yet. But for gardeners, it’s time to thank the Lord for the harvest.

“Do you not say, ‘Four months more and then the harvest?’ I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest. Even now the reaper draws his wages, even now he harvests the crop for eternal life, so that the sower and the reaper may be glad together.” (Jesus)