What Did You Do With What I Gave You?

Its raining a little outside so I’m inside this evening with a few moments for the old computer. I tried out the silage chopper this afternoon and chopped six large loads and everything worked just fine. But I quit around four cause it was a little to wet with the rain and all. When it clears up a bit I’m ready to roll!

Last evening I was reading in my “farmer’s devotional”, a book I received back in spring written by Angus Buchan, that South African farmer/preacher who’s heart for the Lord is something I envy. A good envy too! The book is called, “A Farmer’s Year” and I mentioned it a few months back. And just because I haven’t mentioned it for a time doesn’t mean that it was thrown in my famous “pile” of books and other papers. I’ll write a quote from that book which is so special to me.

Perhaps we need to sit down today and take account of what we are actually doing and giving, not of our money, but of ourselves. God is going to ask us one question when we arrive in home in heaven: “What did you do with what I gave you?”

Yup, last evening as I was paging through the pages of that book, one of my favorites, this really spoke to me. This is the believer’s judgment that Angus is talking about. Many folks just believe that we are going to waltz into heaven being that we are saved, forgetting what the Bible repeatedly tells us about. There are parables that tell us this same thing. Many of them. God asking us, “What did you do with what I gave you?”  And face it, if a person is reading this, they are rich compared to most of the world.

But this isn’t about giving money as stated in the quote. It’s about ourselves. Its about giving our time, our very lives. Now that’s something for a farmer to chew on working all day in the field. Working in a bumper crop, worrying how I’ll get it all in. I shouldn’t be worrying and in fact I worry allot less than I did years ago. And I do hear the voice of the Holy Spirit telling me not to worry. Just do it!

OK, then let’s get on with it. The Bible says, and I’ve heard it a thousand times or more, And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” – Acts 20:35  But do we really believe it? Do we really live it? I know a couple of years ago I really wanted to climb the ladder in ministry, but looking back I was probably doing it for myself more than for the Lord. A while back I kinda got set free when I decided, yes, a person has to make their own decision, I decided I’m going to just follow the Lord and become a servant. In our church for example I don’t worry about if they do this or that. I have no desire to have my way of church being thee way. And a feller gets set free when that happens. When I speak in church I’m starting to understand that its to an audience of One.  I’m not worried so much what people think.Its more important to give the Word, even when a person is stumbling through it, than to worry about how this or that will make me look.

Church though is the smallest part of the whole equation. I love church, that’s for sure, but its the outside that calls me. The one thing I’ve learned in this whole process is that when one is not worried about this or that in church, God moves in ways that few church folk understand. You don’t have to look for opportunities, because they will literally pour out on you. And I mean bigtime. When folks, and that includes me, figure they’re going to make things happen in church, it very seldom happens. Why? Because it’s not in the proper order. The Bible talks allot about that too. Mainly in the gospels. To be the least is where a person wants to be, then if your called up to the head table its an honor, but trying to get a good seat at the head table can lead to some embarrassing moments when asked to step down and get where you belong.

To be a servant,not a master. Our Lord Jesus taught this over and over. Its so simple but we have such a hard time getting that into our heads. I pray that at the believer’s judgment that I can say that I gave and gave. That the seed that our Lord gave us was planted and reaped a huge harvest. And I know that God doesn’t want all the seed planted inside church. That seed He gave for us to plant and tend is for outside the walls. Farming presents a huge opportunity to spread the Gospel. To help people in many ways much of society can’t. It continues to amaze me how city folk just love the farm. I can only speak from the farming angle because that’s what I am, a farmer. But it really doesn’t matter who or what a person does. The opportunities are abundant to take what God has given us and use it for His Kingdom. And I’m not talking about selling everything a person has and giving it to the poor. I’m talking about using our over abundant resources and continually planting the Kingdom’s seeds.

Just dwelling tonight on a wet night. Getting back to the basics. Its so easy to get in a rut and not be operating in these simple basics.

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19 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Good Morning,

    Now Tom… You had to go and come up with this one didn’t ya…. “And I know that God doesn’t want all the seed planted inside church. That seed He gave for us to plant and tend is for outside the walls.”

    Well next Monday is my first outreach with the church. I’m along for the ride mostly…. Hopefully I can talk with someone about a little farming or something, but I’m going to see how the folks introduce others to Jesus. I guess I’m goin to have to change my life verse from 1st Thessalonians about livin the quiet life 🙂

    Other than that, things are pretty damp around here. Too wet for hay…. Too wet to push up the brush pile. Just right for finishing up that PC book though. We are into slavery issues now….. I might not agree with everything the man has to say and he seems to be a little bit of a braggart (see that quiet life thing….. 🙂 ), but I sure do like his conviction. I am envious about people like that ( I do believe thats a good kind of envy too 🙂 )

    Well… sounds like that harvest is going well, and I’m glad to hear it. I hope to get mine started soon… we’ll see if this rain ever quits…… Its a good problem to have though…..

    Have a GREAT day,

    Brad

  2. Morning Brad!

    I think I might be able to chop today, a bit wet out but the main rains skirted us. Gotta get a good start cause its going to take a while!

    Let us know as time goes by how all that goes down there with your church folk,it never hurts to learn what other folks are doing in the Lord’s service!

    I knew another feller that wrote a bit like PC, (Peter Cartwright for those that have not the slightest idea what we are talking about), just looking back on the old Northern Farmer blog there were moments……..

    Well, I’m behind on comments here, behind on e-mails, funny how that goes and I’m going to get more and more behind Lord willing cause I’ll be busy, but a good busy! Hmm, this morning I can give some cows some green chop, will they ever love me 🙂

    God Bless!

  3. Tom you wrote this:
    “To be a servant,not a master. Our Lord Jesus taught this over and over.”

    When I read that I almost fell out of my chair. Such a confirmation!! So much so that I feel I must share it here. Forgive me for the long comment…

    My Utmost for His Highest – September 22

    Title: The Missionary’s Master

    Key Verse: Ye call me Master and Lord: and ye say well; for so I am.

    To have a master and to be mastered is not the same thing. To have a master means that there is one who knows me better than I know myself, one who is closer than a friend, one who fathoms the remotest abyss of my heart and satisfies it, one who has brought me into the secure sense that he has met and solved every perplexity and problem of my mind. To have a master is this and nothing less – “One is your Master, even Christ.”

    Our Lord never enforces obedience; He does not take means to make me do what He wants. At certain times I wish God would master me and make me do the thing, but He will not; in other moods I wish He would leave me alone, but He does not.

    “Ye call me Master and Lord” – but is He? Master and Lord have little place in our vocabulary, we prefer the words Saviour, Sanctifier, Healer.
    The only word to describe mastership in experience is love and we know very little about love as God reveals it. This is proved by the way we use the word obey. In the Bible obedience is based on the relationship of equals, that of a son with his father. Our Lord was not God’s servant, He was His Son. “Though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience . . .” If our idea is that we are being mastered, it is a proof that we have no master; if that is our attitude to Jesus, we are far away from the relationship He wants. He wants us in the relationship in which He is easily Master without our conscious knowledge of it, all we know is that we are His to obey.
    Taken from ‘My Utmost for His Highest’, by Oswald Chambers. © l935 by Dodd Mead & Co

    Blessings one and all.
    Brian

  4. And one of the sweetest examples of servanthood in modern missionary history is that of Oswald Chambers’ (the one who wrote that devo Brian refers to) wife…it was actually Mrs. Chambers who compiled/wrote all of Oswald’s books, including “My Utmost for His Highest.”

    That humbles me & makes me wanna pray harder for my man…and get out of the way! 🙂

  5. Evening Brian!

    Thanks for the putting that on the blog here! It really helps me sometimes when something comes together like this. By the way, I never read Oswald Chambers but will make a note of it to do so when things slow down here a bit. We probably even have some of his stuff in this house. I’ll have to look through my piles of books 🙂

    I’m in the house this evening, breakdown on the chopper, just a burned out bearing and it’ll be fixed before 10 AM and I’ll be rolling again in the fields. Did pretty good today chopping, but quit in late afternoon when I finished a nice field and I could smell something like burning grass. My suspicions were right, a hot burned out bearing. Tomorrow I’ll try and work till eleven at night, that was my plan today but such is not the case 🙂

    Again, thanks!

    God Bless!

    Hi Nina!

    Hmm, see, I learn something all the time here! And that’s a good point about servanthood, very good. There’s folks behind the scenes everywhere doing things for our Lord that rarely get any human credit.

    Thanks and God Bless!

  6. Morning Sir,

    Bearing problems eh?? Well, if you’d update some of that old equipment. you’ll find them oil soaked wood bearings have gone by the wayside and…. wait… thats me…… 🙂 …ugh… one of my least favorite jobs us pressing in bearings… Seems that gettin those boogers straight is real important… something I have to master yet.. 🙂

    You know thinkin back to that ol NF blog, there was a guy over there with PC like qualities….. I think it was the passion that got me there too…. That and one time you took the time to come back and write real quick when you remembered a combine number… ahhh the good ol days….

    Tom, I do believe I see a break in all this weather. Well actually I don’t think weather ever takes a break….. I see a break in all this rain…. Looks like a hayin week next week!! I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I’m kinda looking forward to it!! It will be about the first normal thing I’ve done here in about 3 months!! …and I guess I’d better enjoy it, because its not lookin like a whole lot of help is going to be around… Nothing like square baling by yourself to get back into a norm I guess…..

    Well, I’d better git… I’ve got a cup of instant waiting on me…. Church tonight, and I’m looking forward to it. I am liking playin that ol horn more and more….. Sure beats singin… My singin will git the coon dogs howlin around here for miles 🙂 …..

    Here’s to aligned bearings and I sure hope the harvest continues well…..

    Have a GREAT day,

    Brad

  7. Morning Brad!

    Church tonight eh 🙂 Not for this feller, one of the extremely rare times that I miss it. Its already well known in our church that I have harvest season and most understand the importance of it.

    So get them bearings put on this morning once we get em and get back to chopping by later morning.Heading to a field a mile and a half south so the wagon jockey man won’t spend so much time waiting for me. I’ll probably have the wagons full and be waiting for him.

    When I was making me some breakfast I was thinking about what Angus had written and I copied. About, what did you do with what I gave you. And also thinking about what I wrote about recently, about giving it to God. Boy, those two things can really intertwine! Then I thought,”this is the day that the Lord has made”, and that got intertwined in the mesh too! Then I thought, (now remember, this is a guy staggering around early in the morning, durn near walking into walls and closed doors), these three things put together are what the day is all about! Covers everything. Of course in my own simple backwoods farmer way of thinking that is 🙂

    Gotta git, got hogs to slop, cattle to feed,chickens to feed and water and then out to the pastures, then get to the bearings and hopefully chop a long day!

    God Bless!

  8. A hearty AMEN to your post!

  9. Morning Sir,

    How’s the chopping going?? I’ll bet your tuckered out about now and that is a good thing….

    I’ve got to git this morning, I’ve got cows doing some gardening and my neigbor the gardener ain’t to happy!!

    I’m all for this slick electric fence, but sometimes nothing keeps those calfs in like good ol fashioned barb wire. I guess I’ll be stringin a couple strands today on my neighbors new high tensile horse fence…. In the rain……

    ahhh well… some days are diamonds… some days are stone 🙂

    Have a GREAT day,

    Brad

  10. Hi Patti!!

    Thanks for the Amen!! Made my morning 🙂

    God Bless!

    Morning Brad!

    If it makes you feel better we have calves in our garden all the time:) They like the weeds, (I’m serious), and that one wire electric keeps the cows away but them slick calves just slip on under.

    Chopping went great yesterday, a long day and I hope to do it again and again and again…
    Fixed the bearing lickidy split and that machine has a whole different attitude now.

    Maybe today will be another big one and then its seeing how the weather goes this weekend. Talking rain which sure wouldn’t do no harm to the silage pile outside.

    I figure I’d better git myself. Another long day, went to 10 last evening chopping. Sleep sure was short last night. But that’s why God invented winter in these parts, so a feller would have some real short days to catch up on the Lord’s Word 🙂

    God Bless!

  11. Speaking of Angus Buchan…today’s devo. from “A Farmer’s Life” (9/24) is awesome…about delighting ourselves in the Lord & Him giving us the desires of our hearts. God is in the “small stuff,” too!

    Well, y’all are talking rain, damp, blah blah…making me jealous (in a good way!)…and desiring the outrageous child-like faith that moves mountains & calls down rain from Heaven…

    With fires burning a few hundred miles from me & everything around here dry as a stick in a draught, you can almost smell the fire danger & the dryness crackling in the air…

    We are on “Red Flag” warning which is high fire danger when the dryness couples w/the high winds.

    What we NEED is RAIN! I mean, amazing, MIRACLE rain!!! And not just physically, but a spiritual outpouring to wake the sleeping giant of the church here in my parts. My pastor’s heart is breaking for revival but our mega-church is just dead…he said last night, what will it take for us to wake up & seek the Lord w/our whole hearts?! He is a voice crying in the wilderness…and I’d ask y’all to please pray w/me for the rains & revival we so desparately need here!

  12. Hi Nina!

    That devotional is great eh! Even I can understand it!

    Been chopping silage till late this week and there’s rain in the forecast today for these parts but maybe we’ll get a few hours in before that happens. The crop is totally awesome and we’ve as much as last year made already and we ain’t anywhere near half done!! God is good!

    I’m standing in agreement with you for the rain, and not just the physical rain but the spiritual too!

    Thanks and God Bless!

  13. Amen! Thank you! Rain much-needed! Today even hotter & drier…and feeling a bit discouraged (ok, more than a bit) on the spiritual end, too! I need the child-like, focused faith of Elijah…right now I feel more like Elijah when he was under the juniper tree…

    i wish angus buchan would tell a few stories where his prayers were not IMMEDIATELY answered…

    perseverence is the need of the day…as another favorite preacher (David Wilkerson) often says, “the hardest part of faith is the last half hour…”! 🙂

  14. Morning Nina!

    Sunday morning here before morning chores. The last couple of days here have been full blown harvest!I’m thankful its the Lord’s Day so I can at least get somewhat of a rest 🙂 Still trying to walk straight after so much work the last few days and there’s a few days left of this work too which means its the biggest harvest by far in the history of this place!

    God is good and I’ll get straightened back out in a while, I hope to write something later today hoping there’s a moment here or there. Then catch up with e-mails, durn I can get behind fast 🙂

    God bless!

    • Morning all! Praise God for His harvest for you, Tom & family! He’s awesome! What an amazing God! Been reading about the power of PRAISE & WORSHIP lately, so I think I’ll go “bust a move” in the Lord, as Rev Josh would say! 🙂

  15. well, to all who prayed for rain…we have storm clouds gathering in the sky like you wouldn’t believe & they actually issued a tsunami warning for San Diego & Orange County, saying stay away from the beaches & coasts!

    Amen! Keep us safe, Lord, but bring the RAIN! Spiritual rain, too, even if that means not keeping us safe…

  16. I forgot to put the warning on the prayer requests here. Sometimes the answers are rather quick and also powerful 🙂

    God Bless!

  17. hehehe! 🙂 To that end, keep praying for my friend….that God would get him back on track…the enemy came in & stole vision, replacing it with ambition…law vs. grace. 😦 My heart still grieves, so if y’all can pray God would open my friend’s blind eyes…!!! Perhaps he needs a spiritual tsunami…!

  18. You got it Nina!


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