Have you ever planted seeds and watched them grow? Whether a flower, tree, fruit, or vegetable, it’s rewarding to prepare the soil, water the seeds, and nurture the plant as it grows to maturity. I’ve enjoyed this process on a very small scale within my own home and yard. But I often muse about the satisfaction a farmer experiences from a well-prepared field, sprouting seeds, and a great harvest after months of labor.
The miracle of growth occurring beneath the soil is a great mystery. The seed—when placed in the right environment, and provided the needed moisture and sunlight—grows into exactly what it is meant to produce. A mum seed yields mums. Pumpkin seeds produce pumpkins. But no seed grows just sitting in a seed packet, or even laid out on a countertop. It must be planted in soil, nourished and watered. Growth, then, occurs gradually, until full maturity is realized and the harvest can be gathered.
Jesus referred to the Kingdom of God using this very example in Mark 4:26-29:
And He was saying, “The kingdom of God is like a man who casts seed upon the soil; and he goes to bed at night and gets up by day, and the seed sprouts and grows—how, he himself does not know. The soil produces crops by itself; first the blade, then the head, then the mature grain in the head. But when the crop permits, he immediately puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”
The seed is the words of God. Scripture. The soil is the hearts of people. When we hear, read, study, or meditate upon the scriptures, the words are implanted into the soil of our hearts. Those seeds of truth grow within us and will produce “crops.” First the blade: small beginnings; simple revelations; singular changes in our lives. But the blade matures into the head and then the full grain. Those small beginnings become building blocks of our transformed lives as we continue to yield ourselves to the Word of God.
The Bible serves as a “Seed Packet” for our lives. The words therein won’t do anything for us if we never open the packet and receive them into our hearts. We can’t just let those seeds sit dormant on a shelf or coffee table…or on an app on our devices, and expect them to produce a harvest. God has prepared those seeds for us—to be implanted in our lives—for our good and for His glory.
In the story Jesus told, He said the man did not know how those seeds sprout and grow. Likewise, we don’t always understand or comprehend how the truths in scripture will sprout in our lives, and the lives of others, creating lasting, sustaining fruit. Yet, that is exactly what happens when we choose to nurture and protect the Word of God in our lives.
God’s words will always produce. They will accomplish exactly what they were sent to do. They will cause growth. They will prepare for and provide increase. We see this principle repeated throughout the Bible:
“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return there without watering the earth and making it bear and sprout, and furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater; so will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; it will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it” (Isaiah 55:10-11).
I planted the seed and Apollos watered it. But God is the one who made the seed grow (1 Corinthians 3:6).
Now He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness (2 Corinthians 9:10).
All of us are works in progress—developing our fields—preparing the soil of our hearts. Have you received the words of scripture into your heart? Are those seeds being watered, nurtured, protected, and nourished through what you are reading, hearing, seeing, and thinking upon? Are you growing thereby in the righteousness of God, allowing His Word to transform you?
Let’s prepare our hearts to receive the implanted words of God and allow His seeds to sprout fully in our lives.
Holding Fast to Hope,