Most of us have seen hay in the fields. Maybe you see hay fields on an infrequent basis. For me, it is an almost daily occurrence. I have driven by and watched in fascination as the huge tractors cut the hay. I have seen the hay laying in wait for the baling machine. Then it sits in its large round bales waiting to be picked up and stored away. I never have thought that much about it. The process appears simple. It is, after all, just hay. That is what I used to think. Then I met a hay farmer. I learned that just like most things in life, making hay is not as easy as it looks.
One of the greatest lessons of being a hay farmer is timing. A hay farmer has to cut hay at the right time, assuring an optimal moisture content in the hay. The crop can be ruined by too much moisture. The hay must be harvested before it is too mature. There is a narrow window of time from the beginning of the cutting to the harvesting. The timing of the hay harvest has to be just right.
The same is true in our own lives. Timing matters. We have to do things not when we feel like it, but when it is God’s time. Sometimes this means that we must rush to get something done. Sometimes this means that we must put a dream on hold until it is time. All too often we think we know the right time, but it is God’s time, not ours, that determines the best timing. Just like the hay’s maturity and moisture are affected by natural forces beyond our control, so too are the things in our lives. Our job is to be aware of God’s timing for our lives. Is now the time to act on this vision, or is now the time to develop the vision? Is not the time to act, or is now the time to plan?
There is a time for every purpose under heaven, according to Ecclesiastes, so what time is it now?