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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Graber

I love Jesus & Apple Spice!

Wait...what?!? That's right...I like pumpkin spice, too, but I "fall" for apple spice! Fall is my second favorite season, and the apples are one of the biggest reasons why. Not only are apples my favorite fruit, they have diverse properties:

  • Eat them right off the tree! If you don't get a worm or a wasp in there, they are crunchy, brightly flavored, and juicy!

  • Bake pies, crisps, or tarts with apples. My favorites for this are the Halvorson apples I get at Ocheda Orchards on the Minnesota-Iowa border near the western edge of the states. Granny Smiths and Honeycrisp are a close second.

  • Amish apple friendship bread! Nothing prepares neighbors for a hard winter and quilting bees like Amish apple friendship bread! Okay...I don't know many people who do quilting bees anymore, and I don't sew very well, but apple friendship bread over a cup of coffee definitely brings people together!

  • Applesauce. Even better with Red Hots and cinnamon!

  • The biggest winner (in my opinion): Apple Cider! My recipe calls for a pinch of cardamom, allspice, and cinnamon. Nothing beats this fall sipper!

Now, I don't knock the pumpkin spice. Every person has their favorite harvest food, scent, and memory to go with it. (Mine is apple crisp in Grandma's kitchen! Yum!)

In this season of harvest, I am reflecting on what I am reaping. My grandma used to say "You reap what you sow" (Galatians 6:7) when I suffered the consequences of irresponsibility--especially with my school studies. This is true of good acts, too. When, planting good seeds in fertile soil, the harvest is plentiful. The same thing is true of planting seeds of faith with others. Galatians 6:9 says,

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at a proper time, we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

Good works reap a bountiful harvest whether the crops are fruits, vegetables, or faithful followers of God!

This fall, I am reflecting with gratitude on what I have been so fortunate to reap!

  • Deeper relationships with friends who are rooted in the word of God.

  • New friendships with other believers and people who have come to have a relationship with God through accepting Jesus as their savior.

  • Increase in the number of those attending women's brunch events and the opportunity to sow the word of God and serve others.

  • Continued renewal of my family relationships.

More personally, the more involved I become in the church and women's ministry, the closer my relationship becomes with Jesus. I look to God for His guidance with a heart set on preparing the way for others to come to a relationship with God.

In a little over a week, my partner in ministry, Julie, and I are hosting a women's brunch on Harvesting Faith. The brainstorm for this theme came as we were talking about the evolution of our ministry and how we can do more to serve others. As sowers of the word and love of God, our harvest looks like a people coming together to celebrate growth from being rooted in faith.

Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. Galatians 6:9

Harvest season only lasts for a short time, but now is a good time to do good things for others and to take time to celebrate the good growth from sowing seeds of righteousness.

Friends, if you are available on October 14th, I hope you will stop into the Fellowship Hall at Harvest Community Church at 10 a.m. for some soup and sandwiches, fellowship, and a little message from our guest speaker and new friend, Kelly Scheetz of Scheetz Mercantile. We look forward to serving you and celebrating the bountiful harvest of faithful followers in the name of Jesus!

Best, Michelle

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