I’m not a farmer. But I know enough about farming to appreciate what Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 2:6: “It is the hard-working farmer who ought to have the first share of the crops.”
Gospel ministry, Paul writes, is like farming. The work of entrusting the gospel to others and establishing a church is just plain hard work.
How is pastoring like farming? In his commentary on 2 Timothy, Bryan Chapell writes that the farmer’s life involved:
- early and long hours because he could not afford to lose time;
- constant toil (plowing, sowing, tending, weeding, reaping, storing);
- regular disappointments—frosts, pests, and disease;
- much patience—everything happened at less than slow motion; and
Any of this sound familiar? Don’t be surprised. It’s supposed to be like this! Having realistic expectations is so important if we’re going to last.
But stay at it. It’s worth it in the end.