Well, it is definitely summertime in California! The apricot tree in our
yard bore plentifully already. Our plum tree is in “high gear” with its
sumptuous fruit and the peach tree is bowed down with over a hundred
peaches! Yummm!

Veggie-wise, we’ve already started plucking tomatoes from our plants
and the bell peppers are growing daily. They should be ready in a couple of
weeks. Yes, the harvest of the fruit has begun!

On the spiritual front, we have seen growth, too. Our little, humble
“flock” of 17 members continues to meet online and, in person, quarterly, in
the clubhouse where we live. We have grown from when Patty and I first
got here, 12 years ago; when we were only 12 members. Trials and
tribulations, deaths, and Covid affected our growth but God has always
blessed us. We are averaging 20 souls every Sunday for worship! The
“fruit” is there, even as we see souls outside of our parish eager to study
the Word of God.

Does God promise that because we are faithful in planting seeds or
trees that we will have fruit or veggies to put on the table? No, of course
not. Oppressive heat, viruses, bugs, caterpillars, vermin, etc., all combine
to stop us from harvesting our “bounty”. Patty and I are vigilant in watering,
fertilizing, trimming, and spraying (organic spray, of course) but, even so,
we have lost a few pieces of fruit to opossums. But the battle continues
until the harvest is over.

In the same way, the Church must continue on with the Truth of
God’s Word. The Lord does NOT promise that, because we are faithful, we
will reap a “harvest” of souls. No. In fact, Jesus said, regarding the last
days, “Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith
on the earth?” (Luke 18: 8) The spiritual “bugs and vermin” will continue to
plague our little “flock” but by God’s grace we will continue to pour out the
“water of life”, fertilize with the nutrition of the Gospel, and squash
(spiritually) the enemies of the “holy, Christian Church” as they assault the
Bod of Christ.

May God bless us abundantly at Christ the Rock Lutheran Church with
many more souls who are seeking the Truth. But more importantly, may
we feast on the truth of His Word daily; most importantly glorifying Him
Who sewed His “seed” of grace into our hearts. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!