In the Passion4Africa orchards…………our harvest numbers have fallen off a cliff. From 4,000 kilos in five days a fortnight ago to a maximum of 1,500 this week. If we’re lucky. And this in the run-up to Christmas when our customers are screaming out for fruit – and prices are at an all time high. And we have loads of fruit……and none of it is ripe. We think that a perfect storm of seasons, a hail-storm in September that destroyed a lot of flowers, and the natural rhythm of the orchards/vines have combined to mean that we will harvest VERY little from now until February.

The projected profits from December and January’s harvests are supposed to be funding the development of Orchard Five where I will have SEVENTY people working tomorrow. The income that we receive is what helps to pays for all our education, health and sanitation work…….and I am gloriously, un-naturally, ridiculously relaxed about the whole thing. Which is extremely odd because………………..

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……….I am a control freak. An obsessive. A worrier. A workaholic. A planner. An over-achiever. Horribly driven. I don’t do calm.

And yet, as I look at the pitifully small collection of harvested fruit at the store; as I greet the dozens of customers camped (as usual) at our shop waiting for fruit; as I help the sixty workers dig the new orchard:  I am supernaturally calm and I keep thinking of some bible verses that I didn’t even know I knew….

 Though the fig tree does not bud
    and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
    and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
    and no cattle in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
    I will be joyful in God my Saviour

It has taken nearly eleven years of following (being carried along by!) Jesus but, by the grace of God, I am pretty much there – I trust God. With our ministry, with our 250 children, with the 100 staff that we are employing this week, with the various people that we help in different less structured ways, with our business, with our future – and with my life.

And that trust, this peace, that calm is nothing short of a miracle. If God is for us, which He is, then who can stand against us?

Thank you Lord Jesus.