This morning I thought of a song I hadn’t thought of in years, “Bringing In the Sheaves” which we sang a lot in the church I was raised in:
Sowing in the morning, sowing seeds of kindness, Sowing in the noontide and the dewy eve; Waiting for the harvest, and the time of reaping, We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves. Going forth with weeping, sowing for the Master, Though the loss sustained our spirit often grieves; When our weeping’s over, He will bid us welcome, We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.
This song was written in 1874 by Knowles Shaw, and was inspired by Psalm 126:5-6: “Those who sow in tears Shall reap in joy. He who continually goes forth weeping, Bearing seed for sowing, Shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, Bringing his sheaves with him.”
I truly miss hymns which were Scripturally-based and were sung not to elicit an emotion from us, but to praise and worship our Lord! Living a Christ-centered life is not always easy as it’s sometimes portrayed. Jesus never promised this life would be easy, but He promised we shall overcome if we trust in Him and walk in His ways.
“Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy” (v5) speaks about how we should remember to look ahead of our struggles and sin and that the tears we shed today will be like seeds that are planted in a field that in time through much toil and suffering will rise to a great harvest of joy and thankfulness.
The next verse is a reminder to keep putting one foot in front of the other and walking in the works that the Lord prepared for us to walk in. “He who continually goes forth weeping, bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him” (v 6).
Clarke’s commentary: “A poor farmer has had a very bad harvest: a very scanty portion of grain and food has been gathered from the earth. The seed time is now come, and is very unpromising. Out of the famine a little seed has been saved to be sown, in hopes of another crop; but the badness of the present season almost precludes the entertainment of hope. But he must sow, or else despair and perish.
He carries his all, his precious seed, with him in his seed basket; and with a sorrowful heart commits it to the furrow, watering it in effect with his tears, and earnestly imploring the blessing of God upon it. God hears; the season becomes mild; he beholds successively the blade, the ear, and the full corn in the ear. The appointed weeks of harvest come, and the grain is very productive. He fills his arms, his carriages, with the sheaves and shocks; and returns to his large expecting family in triumph, praising God for the wonders he has wrought.”
This reminds me that the Lord changes hearts and minds, not me. What we are to do as God’s children is walk as he tells us, humbling ourselves before him and men, and walking in the steps He created for us to walk in (Eph 2:10). What a blessing God’s Word gave me this morning, reminding me that the outcome is not my responsibility, but humbling myself to the Lord and being obedient to His Word is my responsibility, and my joy. “For His anger is but for a moment, His favor is for life; Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.” (Ps 30:5)