George H. Morrison
One of the uses of the harvest festival is to waken us to things we take for granted. We are always in peril of taking things for granted, especially in organized communities. The tinker,1 tramping along the highway can never take his firewood for granted; nor can the desert traveler take his water, so he has to shape his course to reach the wells. But in the city where we deal with coal merchants and have water supplied to every house, such things cause us no concern at all. That is especially true of daily bread. The loaf on the table we just take for granted. It has been bought at the baker's or the grocer's, and beyond that our vision seldom goes. And then breaks in on us the harvest festival, and away at the back of all our city shops we see the golden mystery of harvest. We are awakened; we are shaken out of ruts-and do you know what one has said about these ruts? He has said that the rut only differs from the grave in that the latter is a little deeper. We are touched with the wonder of the commonplace-we feel the glory that invests the usual-and that is one office of the harvest festival.
It is this, too, I venture to suggest, that makes it preeminently a Christian festival. For one of the beautiful things about our Lord was that He never took usual things for granted. The Pharisees were always doing that. They took the lilies of the field for granted. They took it for granted that if a woman was caught in sin, the God-appointed conduct was to stone her. And then came He with that dear heart of His in which there was always something of the child, and He went wandering and wondering through the world. He did not see the glory of the rare thing; He saw the glory of the familiar thing-of the tiny blossom that a babe could pluck and the ox could trample in the mire; of the sparrow and of the mustard-seed and of the sweaty and dirty little child; of the woman who was a sinner on the streets. It is a ...
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