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Posts Tagged ‘seeds’

You have probably seen them. Little sprigs of green eking through a concrete crack. Seeds were blown in the breeze, landed there, and somehow, despite the odds, grew into plants.

I saw these while stopped at a traffic light before entering the highway. Pretty blossoms decorating a Texas urban domain during the scorching summer heat. Amazing.

I am reminded of the lesson from Jesus’ story of the seeds. Some land on rocky ground, others in fertile soil. Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root (Matthew 13:5-6).

However, these bunches of foliage are thriving and spreading and blooming. Perhaps the roots are short and so they exist all right in shallow soil. Maybe this flora used to the Texas sun. I think they are a wild variety of verbena.

Anyway, these plants were a “God whisper” to me that we should never predetermine the potential of the seeds we believers spread by our actions and words. Those we think may never take root may end up blossoming because at that time, the conditions we could not see where just right. The crack in their wall of doubt just wide enough. The questioning in their heart just deep enough.

Our job is to sow…kindness, love, justice, forbearance, mercy, and grace. The seeds of the fruit of the Spirit that have begun to ripen in us. Especially now when so much of people’s worlds are upturned and confused. Let the seeds fall where they may. The rest is up to the Creator, Savior, and Guide – our Triune Lord.

There is a saying on my fridge. “Anyone can count the seeds in an apple but only God can count the apples in a seed.” Remember that the next time you encounter a frustrated stressed person who has had a bit too much of the negative news absorbed into their brains.

Let us cast our seeds of God’s love far and wide. We might just see our land blossom in beauty and majesty again.

 

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But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.  2 Peter 3:18

This is hardly a new observation, but it is something I observed anew…perhaps because God wanted me to be reminded of this simple truth.

I bought a planter to grow “cat grass” because it was less expensive than purchasing the planted ones already growing in the pet store. My always-indoor beasties need grass every now and then to aid their digestion, but no access to it other than what I bring to them. To keep them from chomping on my house plants, I give them their own.

The kit arrived, containing a planter, four small mulch discs, and a packet of grass seeds – rye, barley, wheat, and oats. The instructions said to place a disc into one of the planting squares and add water. Wait ten minutes. Then make a well in each square, plant the seeds, and cover them with the damp soil. Place it in a diffused sunny place and keep the room temperature at 68 degrees or above. In 3-4 days, my cats would have grass. Easy enough.

Still I was skeptical. How long had those dry seeds been in the packet? No expiration date on them. They could be years old and I wouldn’t  know. Sure enough, by the end of day two, tiny shoots of grasses began to emerge from the mulch. It worked!

You see where this is going. Jesus told parables about seeds. We’ve read them, heard many a sermon on them. So, what did God remind me?

First, that seeds can lay dormant for a long time, but with the right elements (water, nutrient soil, and sun) they can suddenly sprout. Same thing goes for people. You may think you have had no influence, but given time and the right circumstances, what was lying dormant can begin to push through.

Second, follow instructions and leave the rest up to God. Put aside skepticism. I didn’t know if I could trust this manufacturer to produce a product that would do as it claimed. But I do know my God keeps His promises. If He says it will happen, it will.

Third, in order for me to grow, I need three things – the Son shining gently in my heart, the Word to be a nutrient for my mind, and the Living Water soaking my soul with faith and trust. Eventually what God has planted in me will begin to grow so I can be of service to others in need.

Speaking of instructions…The Lord told me to write this. So I am obeying. Maybe because you needed reminding as well? Seeds planted.

 

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I have had this refrigerator magnet for years… I won’t say how long, but I know it’s been on at least nine refrigerators in five cities and three states.  Yesterday, while I was waiting for the microwave to tell me my dinner was ready, it’s simple profoundness struck me again.

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Anyone can count the seeds in an apple, but only God can count the apples in a seed.

Isn’t that comforting? It means God knows your future. He values your fruitfulness capabilities. Our Lord knows how much fruit you can bear from the little seeds you plant in your day, even if you don’t.  The advice to a friend, the smile to a stranger, the kind word to a service clerk, the held hand and wiped tear. None of it is in vain. What you teach your children by example, or your grandchildren, nieces and nephews. Even the wiggly kid who always sits in the pew in front of you.

Long after we are gone, our seeds will still grow. Our efforts will multiply.

Paul knew it. He told the Corinthian church,  I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. (ICor 3:6)  Over two thousand years later, it still is growing. Paul’s letters convert hearts and strengthen faiths daily, maybe even hourly.

So keep planting, my friend. God knows what will happen.

 

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IMAG0092As I walked along a shaded breezeway, I noticed a small plant peeking out of the concrete. Evidently the wind blew a tiny seed into the crack and perhaps, after a few rainstorms, enough water was captured to entice it to sprout.  Now it is growing. Will it last? Grow little plant – thrive.

It made me think of the parable of the sower in Matthew 13. Jesus says some seeds are sown in rocky soil, but since they have no roots,  they die off quickly. He explains to his disciples that these are the people who have an emotional conversion, but they are never grounded in the Truth or the Word. They lack commitment and trust. But, is that always so?

Roots can take hold, even in the most unlikely places.

When it comes to spreading the love of Christ, we are all to join in the seeding process. Some are to clear the rocks away, others to till the soil, some to sow the seeds. Others are called  to nurture the newly sprouting seedlings, Still others are to keep watering it so it will grow.  But we must remember that God’s Holy Spirit does the growing.. God knows what lies beneath the surface and the potential that seed has. He know what each needs to thrive.

I am not sure if this small plant has deep roots or not. I don’t know what soil lies under that concrete walkway and brick wall. But My Father in Heaven knows.

I cannot see into the future to witness which lives my writings and lectures will have touched, and what the outcome will be for each. However, I know I am called to sow the Truth of Christ anyway and let God take care of the rest — be it through fifty more people or just one.

The next time you feel as if your efforts to bring someone closer to Christ seem unproductive, think on this tiny plant.  You may think their lives are rocky right now, but there just may be nice soil  that was once deposited underneath. Or, there may be undercurrents feeding into the rock you cannot see. Miracles happen every day.

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Fort Worth gets winds- gusty winds that whine through my windowsills like a stubborn child in a tantrum. Incessant.  It seems to last forever.  Actually this time, it has been going on for three days.

Before the latest winds hit, I put up a little bird feeder on the tree outside my patio. It was on sale and so was the seed. Within 24 hours I heard the cheeps and saw two finches perched on it, announcing to their feathered kin and friends that they had found free chow. Then a few sparrows, and my favorite, the timid turtle doves appeared.

dreamstimefree_97858While writing at my computer, I noticed the little feeder tilting in the wind. On it clung a determined purple finch, timing its pecks to the gusts. It’s little feet curled tightly around the pole. Wings flapped to maintain balance. But, no matter what, that tiny bird was staying on that feeder so it could have the seeds. As the feeder tilted, some of the seeds fell to the ground, greeted by opportunistic doves below.

I smiled – that’s me on that feeder.

If you picture at the feeder as God’s blessings and the winds as life, can you see the analogy?

Life can get a bit gusty and wobbly at times. We cannot control the winds of change. But we can redirect our sails. That is what a magnet on my fridge that my late mother gave me states.

God gives us abundant blessings. We, though, have to choose to ingest them into our life. When our world turns gusty and we feel tossed about a bit, we can still cling to those blessings.  That takes determination and tenacity. But God continues to provide – that feeder of blessings will never empty all the way.

And here is the best part. When others see us clinging on, a bit of those blessings may spill their way as well. People gather around a person who perseveres. They watch and ask, “How do they do that?”  Our tenacity and can-do attitude attracts others. Just remember to tell them whose feeder you are on and why. You never know where those seeds of blessing will fall.

And he told them many things in parables, saying: “A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth of soil, but when the sun rose they were scorched. And since they had no root, they withered away. Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.   (Matthew 13:3-8 ESV)

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