Come Ye Thankful People, Come
Come, ye thankful people, come, Raise the song of harvest home! All is safely gathered in, Ere the winter storms begin; God, our Maker, doth provide For our wants to be supplied; Come to God's own temple, come; Raise the song of harvest home!
This hymn, Come Ye Thankful People, Come, written in 1844 by Henry Alford, is one of thanksgiving for the fall harvest. It celebrates the labor of the spring and summer. It speaks of the gathering in of the bounty God has provided. Over the past few months God has orchestrated a combination of sun, moon, rain, and wind to allow the crops to achieve their maturity. They are now nearly ready for the harvest. It is truly a time for giving thanks, not only for the bounty, but especially for God’s participation in His creation.
When we, with wonder, consider God’s meticulous attention to these details, we can easily see parallels of another future harvest. Our lives in Christ are much like the crops as they grow and mature. In Christ, we begin as a babe, new in our understanding of His concern and watchfulness over us. As the seasons of our life progress, we hear the Word, we learn, we understanding more fully its meaning and importance in our lives. Growth comes, strength increases, we reach the stage of maturity, of readiness.
We ourselves are God's own field, Fruit unto his praise to yield; Wheat and tares together sown Unto joy or sorrow grown; First the blade and then the ear, Then the full corn shall appear; Grant, O harvest Lord, that we Wholesome grain and pure may be.
Finally, our harvest day comes. The Harvester arrives in the field. All is gathered in. No longer will we be subjected to the winter storms of life. Because we have remained faithful we will reap the harvest and find rest in that season.
For the Lord our God shall come, And shall take the harvest home; From His field shall in that day All offences purge away, Giving angels charge at last In the fire the tares to cast; But the fruitful ears to store in the garner evermore.