I was having a discussion today with a friend about sowing into people's lives. Sowing the Word of God into their hearts. Sowing and sowing. I was feeling quite sad that not all we sow would not reap a harvest. It felt like a bit of a waste of time.
So I went to the Word of God and read the parable Jesus taught about the Sower and the seed.
"Once there was a man who went out to sow grain. As he scattered the seed in the field, some of it fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some of it fell on rocky ground, where there was little soil. The seeds soon sprouted, because the soil wasn't deep.
But when the sun came up, it burned the young plants; and because the roots had not grown deep enough, the plants soon dried up.
Some of the seed fell among thorn bushes, which grew up and choked the plants.
But some seeds fell in good soil, and the plants bore grain: some had one hundred grains, others sixty, and others thirty."
And Jesus concluded, "Listen, then, if you have ears!" (Matthew 13 3-9)
Seed had been sown into lives - and seed has been unfruitful. As a teacher of the Word, and as someone who believes very passionately about sowing into people's lives, I find that sometimes the crops don't yield.
Jesus went on to explain what he meant by this unfruitful seed:
When seed falls on the path - the person who receives the seed doesn't understand the Word of God and it is stolen away from them by the Evil one.
When seed falls on rocky ground, the seed is fertilised, but the roots don't run deep and are destroyed by circumstances and life.
When seed falls in the thorn bushes, the small fertilised plants are choked by cares and worries and passions of the world.
When seed falls in fertile soil, the seeds grow, their roots run deep, they bear fruit - more fruit than seed you ever sowed!!
Once the sower has sown the seed, what happens to that seed is out of his control. He can't nurture every single seed he has sown, he can't chase away the birds, he can't water every single plant, and make sure the roots run deep. The sheer volume of seed sown would make that task impossible. Once the seed is sown, it's out of his control. A farmer nowadays, pretty much sows and then waits to see if his efforts were fruitful. I can bet not every seed he sows in the paddocks will be fruitful.
Once I have sown the seeds God prompts me to sow, I cannot control what happens to them. I need to keep sowing, regardless if the people who receive it have a fertile heart or not.
I also need to use the manure that life dishes out, to make the soil in my heart more fertile. So I can hear the Word of God and bear fruit. I want more than anything to be fruitful.
"Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them." (Matthew 7:15-20)
Lord, help me to prepare my heart to be fertile, every single day to receive from you. I want seeds sown into my life so I may produce a harvest. I want my life to be fruitful. Help me keep my heart soil soft and weed free, so your Word can grow within me freely.
Thankyou for the opportunities you have given me to sow seed. I pray that you will water and nurture the seeds that have fallen into fertile hearts. Thankyou for the opportunities you will give me in the future to sow the Living Word into hearts. I pray you begin to prepare those who will receive.
Thankyou for speaking to me through your Word.