Thanksgiving: The fields are white with harvest.
For anyone who has lived in the South, in the fall, white fields can only mean cotton.
When we lived in Lubbock, Texas, cotton was indeed King. Most of the land around the city was used to raise that cash crop and many of our friends made their living by it one way or another. For those folks, the size of the crop would determine their entire next year’s income. Because of the large number of people working in the cotton industry, the harvest also affected the economy of the entire area.
Unlike other cotton-raising areas, the time for harvest in West Texas was always during the last weeks of November. If you worked in cotton, when it was time to harvest, you did nothing else. For days on end, wherever we drove, you would see giant machines, harvesting the white bolls, and everyone was praying there wouldn’t be a stretch of bad weather that would damage the crop.
For West Texas cotton people, Thanksgiving Day did not come on the fourth Thursday of the month; it came after the harvest was gathered. It didn’t matter that the rest of the country was home, stuffing turkeys and stuffing themselves, watching parades and football. The field were white and the harvest was ready and it was time to work. Only after every boll was picked would the workers would go home and celebrate.
There is another harvest time and the crop is more precious than a cash crop; it’s for the souls of men. Jesus told his disciples that the fields were ripe with harvest. He told them to pray for the harvest and for the workers. Soon, after the harvest has been safely gathered in, there will be an eternal day of Thanksgiving; and what a celebration that will be.
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