The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest. (Matthew 9:37-38)
Jesus’ words to his disciples, over 2000 years ago, are still true today. There is an abundant harvest waiting to be reaped, and not enough workers. Thankfully, the Lord is still the Lord of the harvest, and He will send forth workers in answer to earnest prayer.
Where will the workers come from?
Do you ever wonder where these workers would be coming from? The obvious answer is the church, the body of Christ. Christ has given spiritual gifts to every believer. These gifts include, but are not limited to: evangelism, mercy, teaching, shepherding, giving, serving, and hospitality.
The gifts have been given for specific reasons:
- To equip the saints to minister
- To build up the body of Christ
- To affect spiritual maturity-in knowledge and character
Gifts are to be used
Different gifts are given for the common good (1 Corinthians 12:7), and it’s expected that they will be used (Romans 12:6). And when each part of the body is working properly doing its job, the body grows, building itself up in love (Ephesians 4:7-16).
In many assemblies, there are only a few men and women doing the majority of the work. Technically, there is an available work force, because there are warm bodies filling the pews, but the actual laborers are few. Men and women are not using their spiritual gifts, and consequently, the harvest is not being reaped.
God chooses us to work
God is perfectly capable of raising up harvesters without human help, but He chooses to involve believers in that work. Through prayer and discipleship. It’s the responsibility of those using their gifts to equip more saints to minister through personal discipleship.
This includes training individuals to identify and use their spiritual gift. Both men and women are to teach other men and women (respectively). (Titus 2:1-10)
An opportunity for young women
Several years ago Ann Bjorlie (Grand Rapids, MI) was burdened to start the In Tents Discipleship Program for young women. Her vision was to instruct, encourage, and equip women to serve the Lord from their homes, in their assemblies, and in their communities. Since 2010, Ann has welcomed many young women into her life and home, exposing them to the example and wisdom of godly women in all stages of life.
Ann partners with these women to teach spiritual and practical skills. A variety of gifts and callings are modeled, skills are taught and practiced. Discipleship happens in the Bjorlie home, alongside the normal every day tasks of housekeeping, child rearing and cooking.
The program runs for two weeks and is packed with training and hands on experience. Bible study, prayer, hospitality, quantity cooking for outreach, visitation, Bible clubs, preparing and presenting personal testimonies, evangelism, and much more. This knowledge and skill set will be used for the remainder of their lives!
This year’s In Tents Program runs from Sunday, June 18 until noon on Saturday, July 1. It is held in Grand Rapids, Michigan. In light of the intensity of the program, the attendees should be 16 or older.
“Pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” Prayerfully consider joining us yourself or encouraging a young woman from your assembly to attend.
This is a faith ministry and our attitude has always been, “freely you have received, freely give.” We do accept gifts, but we do not charge the young women for their training. To ensure your spot in the program, apply early!
For more information, or for an application, please email Bernadette Veenstra. (firstname.lastname@example.org).