Thursday, December 02, 2010

Seeds To Plant

"He answered and said to them: “He who sows the good seed is the Son of Man. 38 The field is the world, the good seeds are the sons of the kingdom, but the tares are the sons of the wicked one."  Matthew 13:37-38

The last few days I feel like I've had a one-tracked mind.  I keep thinking about seeds and gardening.  And yet, I'm not leafing through those catalogs yet or spending time looking at the assortment online.  I'm simply thinking about thinking about it.  And I'm thinking more about the harvest than the planting anyway.  I even have been dreaming about harvesting from a garden, and last night I had a dream that I walked out to a garden that I had known was bare, and instead found a whole garden full of ripe and ready things to harvest- beautiful tomatoes and apples specifically.

The tomatoes intrigue me, because do you know what they were originally called here in the United States?  The were called Love Apples.  And in the ultimate of irony, everyone thought they were poisonous because it is a cousin of plants that are poisonous and toxic to consume.  And yet, I am thinking about that love apple, and I'm thinking about how in the last few days all I seem to think about is my future garden, and how my heart is literally racing when I think about planting, and I have to say, I'm thinking that God's trying to tell me something.  And it's not that I need to start planning my garden.

It's that it's time to sow some seeds of love, and the seeds that Jesus sowed while He was here on earth.  Do you know that I prefer to garden with heirloom seeds?  Those are seeds that are original- some of them go back hundreds of years, they haven't been crossed and mutated to produce a perfect specimen.  They are unique, and as I said, many of them are old.  Jesus planted perfect seeds, and those seeds are still there, just waiting for the people of God to pick them up and start spreading them.  And I believe the result of that seed sowing will be beyond our expectations.  Just as in my dream, I thought that my garden was barren, suddenly, all the seeds that had been planted were bearing abundant fruit.

It's time for a harvest!

And all these thoughts I'm having about sowing seed and tending a garden?  Why, it's only because I'm thinking about being like my Daddy!

"Then Jesus answered and said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does in like manner."  John 5:19-20

God, the Father is the ultimate gardener.

“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned."  John 15:5-6

This is something to think about.  When we're out and about, doing our day-to-day in the world, what seeds are we sowing?  Are we sowing any seeds at all.  When we share joy, love, patience, compassion, we're sowing seeds of the Kingdom of Heaven!  Or are we too busy complaining, or judging, or picking out what we don't like?  Our thoughts and our words become the seeds that can take root and can make a difference in some one's life.  Let's choose to make those seeds good seeds that will fall on good ground!

“Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. 4 And it happened, as he sowed, that some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds of the air came and devoured it. 5 Some fell on stony ground, where it did not have much earth; and immediately it sprang up because it had no depth of earth. 6 But when the sun was up it was scorched, and because it had no root it withered away. 7 And some seed fell among thorns; and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no crop. 8 But other seed fell on good ground and yielded a crop that sprang up, increased and produced: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred.”  Mark 4:3-8

Sometimes our seed may fall on stony ground, or among thorns, but sometimes, that seed falls right where it needs to, and it grows, and blooms, and multiplies.  When one seed of a vegetable is planted, it produces a plant that itself produces hundreds of seeds.  We can take hope in that.  We can know that what we see in the natural with our eyes can also take place in the spirit.  As we sow the seeds of love and compassion, some of them will fall in places where they are not wanted.  But some of them will fall into those people who really need it.  And that seed will grow, and they will want to know more, and just like that, they've grown into their own seeds and start scattering them themselves.  That's how the Kingdom of Heaven will bloom and grow on this earth.  One person is all it takes to start scattering good seeds- the seeds of Jesus, and it can make a world of difference to an entire community. 

So let's sow some seed- and let's expect a return on our sowing.  Let's expect a harvest!  When I sow seeds for my garden, I don't plant them expecting that I will get nothing for the effort of sowing.  I expect that with proper tending, watering, and weeding, I will have a garden full of fruits and vegetables.  When we plant a seed, we need to carefully tend it, water it and weed it.  We need to encourage the tender young shoots and seedlings with careful care- not by being brusque and brash.  It only takes the slightest movement in a garden to tear out a tender seedling.  So to, do we need to be careful among those who are new to faith in Jesus.   We need to approach those newly sprouted seeds with love and care. 

And we can know that we are doing exactly as the Father would have us do.  Happy Harvest Time!

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