Monday, July 7, 2014

Sowing Seeds

Sowing seeds...it's something we don't just talk about on the farm, we literally do it! The last few days we've had a few conversations about it...the rain and wet conditions have delayed us in planting some beans, so we're discussing what to do about that. My oldest daughter went to camp and came home sharing about a message on sowing and reaping. And today I was home with a sick little boy and found myself listening to an online sermon that focused on Galatians 6:7-9.

So naturally God has me here to share some thoughts with you...what do you think about when you hear the phrase "sowing seeds"? Do you think about seeds you sow or ones that are sown into the soil of your heart? Do you think about the process? The work? The result?

There's much to think about when we're discussing sowing seeds, but today let's focus on 3 things that have been brought to my attention.

1) Timing is important. On the farm in Iowa, we have to get the seed in the grown during a specific time frame because of the growing season. Corn, beans and oats all take time to grow so it's critical to get the seed planted in order to allow enough time before the cold weather comes. In a similar way, it's important to plant spiritual seeds in a timely fashion. None of us are guaranteed tomorrow, so friend if God puts it on your heart to share your faith, don't delay. Do your part and plant the seed...in His time, God will make it grow.

2) You reap what you sow. If my husband wants to harvest oats, he can't plant rye. If we want corn to feed our cattle it will do no good to plant beans. The same is true in life, but you don't have to take my word for it - Galatians 6:7b-8 sums it up quite well, "A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit will reap eternal life." Friend, if you and I long to live a life that produces fruit that pleases God we must plant seeds that are good. If we want to live a righteous life tomorrow we must do the right thing today. If we want to be more mature in our faith next year, we must live more like Jesus today.

3) One sown seed produces many new seeds. I really hadn't thought about this much until my daughter shared an illustration from camp. Joy shared how the speaker held up a kernel of corn and asked, "What happens when I plant this?" The kids correctly responded, "It grows. It makes more corn." The speaker then went on to talk about that seed producing a stalk of corn which has a few ears, which each have numerous kernels. I'm a numbers gal, so I asked my farmer husband about this, and he said 20 pounds of corn seed can produce around 8,400 pounds of corn at harvest. Those numbers are quite remarkable!

I'm not sure how the math works out in a spiritual sense, but I have to believe there is some sort of ripple effect. It's fun to think about this as I reflect on the good seeds I've planted, but my heart hurts as I think about the bad seeds I've sown into hearts, others and my own.

Like I said I've been thinking about this over the past few days and it's left me encouraged. I pray I do more than simply think about it and now that I've shared with you, I pray we will all be influenced to intentionally plant seeds that are good! Friend, farming isn't an easy job, but it's one we are called to do in a spiritual sense, so may Paul's words encourage us - "Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up." (Galatians 6:9)

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