How do you plant a seed? You hold it in your hand. You ready the ground. You put the seed in the ground and you walk away and forget about it. Sometimes you water it and sometimes you don’t. Sometimes it grows and sometimes it doesn’t. This is what God revealed to me today. Here is my take, today, on the Seed and the Sower.
Mark 4 (MSG) talks about planting seeds. 3-8 “Listen. What do you make of this? A farmer planted seed. As he scattered the seed, some of it fell on the road and birds ate it. Some fell in the gravel; it sprouted quickly but didn’t put down roots, so when the sun came up it withered just as quickly. Some fell in the weeds; as it came up, it was strangled among the weeds and nothing came of it. Some fell on good earth and came up with a flourish, producing a harvest exceeding his wildest dreams.”
The seeds were thrown on all kinds of ground. Scattered. Just tossed out with a hand. Thrown. Not planted with excessive planning, with special fertilizer or that ‘as seen on TV’ trowel. Thrown. Scattered. The farmer here is not discriminating about where the seeds are thrown. He isn’t careless or random, but he is taking every opening, every potential opportunity to plant seeds wherever they might grow. With hope, they WILL grow.
13-14 He continued, “Do you see how this story works? All my stories work this way. (This is Jesus talking) “The farmer plants the Word. (The farmer is the Holy Spirit, urging you personally, or maybe He’s using another to reach your heart; a pastor, friend, co-worker, neighbor, someone on the street or at the store, or <WoW!> even your child.)
15 Some people are like the seed (we are these seeds, we can be or have been all of the seeds) that falls on the hardened soil of the road. No sooner do they hear the Word than Satan snatches away what has been planted in them. (Snatches it away. In one ear and out the other. Confounded by confusion, distrust, and hurt? Tiredness or lack of interest? Whatever the reason, nothing sticks.)
16-17And some are like the seed that lands in the gravel. When they first hear the Word, they respond with great enthusiasm. But there is such shallow soil of character that when the emotions wear off and some difficulty arrives, there is nothing to show for it. (This is the seed that gets discouraged and sees no hope. They give up. The going gets tough and they get going – right down the other side of the path.)
18-19The seed cast in the weeds represents the ones who hear the kingdom news but are overwhelmed with worries about all the things they have to do and all the things they want to get. The stress strangles what they heard, and nothing comes of it. (This is the worrier, stressed out, never enough time person. The person with just a little faith. Their faith is small and they are unaware of how strong that little seed of faith really is. If this seed can just keep going and push through the negativity in their minds they too will prosper).
20“But the seed planted in the good earth represents those who hear the Word, embrace it, and produce a harvest beyond their wildest dreams.” (This is the seed we want to be. Hear it, embrace it and produce a harvest. Full of the joy of the Lord and ready to respond. Become a seed planter.)
Have you ever asked God to tell you what kind of seed you are and what kind of seed you are throwing? I know there have been seasons in my life where I have been all of these seeds. Barely grounded and standing on rough ground. Weedy and disheartened, listening to the negative words and feeling choked. I have had times when I have been full of worry and held down by fear. Sometimes, something hits and we can easily fall prey to the confusion and worry of circumstances. How do you stop? You study, you pray, you talk to your mentor, you sing when you don’t feel like singing, you praise God when you can’t do anything else.
Hope is real. Hope is Jesus. Jesus IS our Hope. We can and do get through the rough patches in life because we have the best gardener in the world. Jesus said “But take heart! I’ve conquered the world.” (John 16:33) We have no reason to worry or doubt, but we will. We will have no reason to fear, but we do. We will have no reason to run, but we can take off in a quick minute. But God! When we fall prey to ourselves and the world of negativity, all we HAVE TO do is remember His words.
Jesus said (Peggy paraphrasing) – “Don’t worry, I’ve got this!”