30. They came out of the town and made their way toward him. 31. Meanwhile his disciples urged him, “Rabbi, eat something.” 32. But he said to them, “I have food to eat that you know nothing about.” 33. Then his disciples said to each other, “Could someone have brought him food?” 34. “My food,” Said Jesus, “is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work. 35. Do not say, ‘Four months more and then the harvest’? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest. 36. Even now the reaper draws his wages, even now he harvests the crop for eternal life, so that the sower and reaper may be glad together. 37. Thus the saying ‘One sows and another reaps’ is true. 38. I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labor.” 39. Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” 40. So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. 41. And because of his words many more became believers. 42. They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the savior of the world.”
Reflection by Darlene Wagner
A harvest implies abundance. Christ’s disciples are the ones who reap a “harvest” of souls from the Samaritan villages. Samaritans were traditionally excluded from Orthodox Judaism. Yet, the radical inclusiveness of Christ’s grace breaks down the barriers of orthodoxy. The Jewish prophets who preceded Christ, were the ones who labored to sow the seed. Through messages such as: “I will say to those who were not my people, ‘You are my people!’” (Hosea 2:23), the prophets toiled for a harvest they would never see in their mortal lifetimes. Our testimonies at Pilgrimage: “Open and Affirming” and “No matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey …” may represent either the hard work of sowing seed or the celebration of harvest. Whichever scenario plays out, our radical love and inclusiveness will heal our fearful and divided society. Our testimony of unconditional Divine love is a critically-needed medicine — especially during a pandemic.