Springtime in the southern United States kicks off planting season. The ground is plowed, seeds are sown and watered, and then we wait. We wait for that first sign of life and then we watch it grow. We talk to the plants encouraging them to grow big and strong. We pull the weeds. We fertilize. We do our best to keep bugs from attacking the plants and critters from eating the vegetables prematurely. It takes a great deal of effort to get that seed to full maturity. However, not all seeds make it. Some of the plants are attacked by bugs. Some of them get eaten by deer and other critters. Some of them never sprout for whatever reason.
As Christians, we also sow seeds. We sow seeds in people that cross our paths throughout our lives. Unlike watching our garden grow, we usually don’t get to see what happens to these seeds that we plant. If we look in Luke 8, we find the parable of the sower that sheds some light on what could happen to those seeds we plant:
“A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds ate it up. Some fell on rocky ground, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.” When he said this, he called out, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.” His disciples asked him what this parable meant. He said, “The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of God has been given to you, but to others I speak in parables, so that, ‘though seeing, they may not see; though hearing, they may not understand.’ “This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. Those on the rocky ground are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away. The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature. But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.
As the parable states, our seeds can land in many different places and have many different results. Our responsibility is to plant them. Sometimes we have a chance to encourage them to grow and sometimes we don’t. Still, our job is to plant them. Sometimes God uses us to plant seeds. We need to make sure we are always available to be used to plant seeds.
So, you may ask, what do seeds look like? Seeds could be many things including:
- An encouraging word – 1 Thessalonians 5:11
- A good deed – Philippians 2:13
- The way you respond in conflict – James 1:19
- Giving of your time – Hebrews 13:2
- Being a mentor - Philippians 4:8
- Setting an example – James 1:22-25
- Sharing God’s Word with someone – 2 Timothy 2:15
- Praying for/with someone – James 5:16
As you go about your daily lives, I encourage you to be aware and available for opportunities that come up and plant as many seeds as you can!
Happy planting season!
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