Reading time: two minutes. “When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the Lord your God for the good land He has given you” (Deuteronomy 8:10). I didn’t grow up a farmer, but we did a lot of harvesting on our little acreage out in Oregon. I can’t say I enjoyed it. Every morning, it seemed, throughout the summer, my dad would leave a list for my brothers and me: pick the cherries (three kinds), the berries (three kinds), the figs, the plums (two kinds), the pears, the peaches, the apples (four kinds!), the walnuts, the hazelnuts… There was always more picking to do, and I saw it as an annoying interruption to my summer plans. But I can hardly eat any of the aforementioned fruitful delights without remembering how much I enjoyed the harvest. It feels good to feel good, and good food is a Joy from the Lord. Here’s three quick reasons why I look back at the harvesting of the fruit with great joy1. A fit, healthy, strong body. There was a lot of tree climbing, a lot of bending and stooping, a lot of running around and a lot of throwing (four boys picking apples! Duh!) involved with those daily harvests. Maybe eating all that healthy food and keeping the sugary treats to a minimum helped the four of us grow to six foot three and taller. I work harder at eating food the way God makes it (and not the way Sara Lee makes it) these days. There was a lot more of the good stuff in front of my face back in those days. I like the way good food makes me feel. I don’t feel 12 very often, but when I eat better, I feel and run and throw and bend and stretch better. 2. Exercise. Picking fruit was hard, sweaty work, but there was a payoff. The joy of going through life with a healthy, fit body was a real joy. There weren’t too many adventures of hiking in the mountains or a weekend at the beach that we had to miss out on. Muscle tone and flexibility open doors to fun activities. It’s worth the effort I invest nowadays, too. 3. Tasty treats. It might be that my memory is better than the actual eating back then was, or it could be that my taste buds are starting to fail me, But some of my best memories were diving in to the luscious fruits of the “good land” the Lord had given us. Good food tastes good. Enjoy the goodness of the Lord. And remember to give thanks! Thanks for reading! Subscribe to Blog Do you serve in a multiple staff setting in a church, Lutheran school, university or social service ministry? Discover how a Ministry Team Wellness Workshop can help enhance your team ministry by building the unity, spiritual life and communication essential to partnership in ministry. Contact Program Director Darrell Zimmerman for more information.