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I’m Evidence of the Harvest to Come - Wholly Loved - December 22

I’m Evidence of the Harvest to Come

By Jessica Brodie

“He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of all He created.” James 1:18

Have you ever produced something you wanted to show off to everyone?

I’ve never been gifted at gardening, but wow, do I remember the one and only time I planted a garden and tried to grow tomatoes. That first tomato was gorgeous! Red, lush, stunningly ripe—I took a picture and showed it off like it was a brand-new baby. The others… well, let’s just say between the bugs and rabbits and hot summer sun, they weren’t exactly picture-worthy. Still, I got to make one lovely, delicious salad with my first tomato.

In the Bible, the concept of “firstfruits” was important. In the first century, if you wanted to eat, you had to know how to grow your own food. Firstfruits were also indications of the harvest to come, sort of a guarantee that the harvest was indeed imminent. And, as with most things, the first of your crop was usually the best. God knew it, and so did everyone else.

That’s why, when the people brought sacrifices to show gratitude for God’s gifts, they brought their firstfruit: the first crop of wheat, batch of olive oil, the firstborn lamb, cluster of grapes. They didn’t give God their leftover, unwanted discards. They gave God the first, the best.

In today’s verse, James reminds us we are God’s special, chosen people. Selected, rescued, and redeemed by Him, we’ve been gifted with a life with God for all eternity. Of all creation, we are His crown, His prize, His glory. He’d show our baby pictures to His friends; we’re born from His truth and a glorious representation of the “harvest” He so loves.

God chose to “give us birth through the word of truth” (James 1:18). We are special to Him, his “firstfruit.” But more harvest is coming right behind us. We represent hope and a future. Sometimes we struggle, even fail. No one is perfect.

But as God’s own, His prized possession, let’s do our best to live in the way He wishes and let our light shine for all to see.

Jessica Brodie is an award-winning journalist and a member of the Wholly Loved Ministry team. She’s also an author who currently serves as the editor of the South Carolina United Methodist Advocate, the oldest newspaper in Methodism. She is the author of More Like Jesus: A Devotional Journey (2018) and editor of Stories of Racial Awakening: Narratives on Changed Hearts and Lives of South Carolina United Methodists (2018), both from her newspaper’s Advocate Press. She also writes contemporary women’s fiction, represented by Bob Hostetler of The Steve Laube Agency. Her novel The Memory Garden won the American Christian Fiction Writers’ 2018 Genesis Contest. She has a faith blog at JessicaBrodie.com.

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