Harvest: Part II

This week, we’re exploring “Harvest.” Below is part II. If you missed part I, catch up HERE.
Breaking down the definition of Harvest further:

2: the act or process of gathering in a crop.
This would imply a seed has been planted; that labor was involved and the undertakings of planting, pruning, and provision for that crop have been completed. Now that it’s produced, action/labor is again needed in order to gather the end result. Merriam and Webster, are you saying that harvest is not just the result but an action too? Major “ugh.” So often, I want the crop without the seed (see point #1), and even when I do plant the seed, and the crop has arrived, I don’t feel like I should have to get it – certainly not myself! Shouldn’t it just be given to me, already picked, cleaned, and ready to consume? Yet, I see the beauty in engaging in the gathering process. I see the self-esteem we all want, for ourselves and for others, being developed during the harvest. I see the independence and work ethic we desire for our children being cultivated during the gathering. How many harvests have I let slip by me because I wasn’t willing to gather? We must harvest the harvest in order to have gained anything.
welcome3: a mature crop.
This means the harvest cannot be considered a harvest until it is mature. Planting the seed is good. A sprout is the start of the harvest to be enjoyed and should be celebrated. But the sprout has not yet dug roots deep enough and produced fruit ripe enough for us to consume for our highest benefit. Sure, we could collect on the small investment, and say “see, my planting has produced,” but its fulfillment is shallow and quickly fades. I see my generation doing a lot of planting – getting a good education, creating technology, diving headfirst into their passions and exploring entrepreneurism. Those are all good things. Yet, just because we’ve planted the seed, doesn’t mean the harvest is immediate or without uncertainty. There are droughts, floods, and pests in life that threaten a crop’s ability to reach maturity, but each of those threats also help to produce resilience. The crop needs sun, the crop rain, and even need the animals. When we allow these trials to feed us instead of defeat us, we can produce a mature crop, a harvest. How often do we sabotage our own harvest by trying to collect or give up too soon?