Share your best…

“A farmer, whose corn always took the first prize at the State Fair, had the habit of sharing his best corn seed with all the farmers in the neighbourhood.
When asked why, he said, it is really a matter of self-interest. The wind picks up the pollen and carries it from field to field. So if my neighbours grow inferior corn the cross-pollination brings down the quality of my own corn. That is why I am concerned that they plant only the very best”.
We will soon be offering our prayers of thanksgiving for harvest. However we do realise that, though God has given his best to the world and has blessed the earth with abundance, the selfishness and the greed of the few has caused havoc in our society. It has to do with our forgetfulness about God’s fair ways in blessing not the few but all His creation.
I like one of the confessions that people are asked to make on Harvest thanksgiving:

We confess to you
Our lack of care for the world you have given us
We confess to you
Our selfishness in not sharing the earth’s bounty fairly
We confess to you
Our failure to protect resources for others

We are heading for a global problem in the disparity between rich and poor. The consolidation of wealth in a few people’s hands is socially divisive. We are faced with unsatisfied, angry and frustrated people. There are multiple concomitant effects of poverty in our society. Poverty leads people to resort to abnormal behaviour to meet their essential needs in the society.  Mahatma Gandhi (an Indian freedom fighter) said: “The Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s need, but not every man’s greed.”
For a peaceful world the interest of 99% of people being dominated by the rich 1% has to come to an end. Austerity measures may discomfort those who are in the habit of holding back the good for their own interest. A habit of sharing their best with others will create a just world. The gap between rich and poor is growing rapidly in the UK.
The British poor are much better off in absolute terms than the poor in most Third World countries, but they are worse off than those in other Western nations. The poorest fifth of Britons have an average per capita income 32 per cent lower than their equivalents in the US and 44 per cent lower than in the Netherlands.    (Independent 10th August).
Harvest thanksgiving is a time for us to make confession of our sins and the sins of the society in the misuse of God’s creation. We confess,

God our Father, we are sorry
For the times when we have used your gifts carelessly and acted ungratefully
We belong to a people who are full and satisfied
But ignore the cry of the hungry
We are thoughtless
And do not care enough for the world you have made
We store up goods for ourselves alone
As if there were no God and no heaven
Father, in your mercy
Forgive us

Let this Harvest Thanksgiving create in us a desire to share our best resources with others so that all those who are our neighbours may benefit from our blessings. Let us pray that God may grow in us the fruit of His Spirit in order to build God’s just kingdom on this earth. For the Harvest of the Spirit of God in us is Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness and Self-control.

With much love
Arun

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