Spring is one of my favorite times of the year.
The last snow is gone, the days are longer with the warmer temperatures, the flowers and trees began to bloom. After a long nap the earth is coming alive again. And I start planning and thinking about planting our garden the first warm day we have. My wife always cautions me to wait (we had snow in May two years ago) but the itch to get started is hard to resist.
A garden is a lot of work. First you have to prepare the ground, then decide what you will plant. After you have planted, you have to water and fertilize, eliminate the weeds, this is an ongoing job, (weeds unlike plants need little encouragement to grow) and take precautions against insects. With good weather, just enough rain, and prayer, the garden will eventually provide a harvest of vegetables and fruit.
Preparing the ground is the most important part of the garden. And the seed. Even after you prepare the soil, where and how you plant the seeds will determine if they grow.
If the seeds do not have the proper nutrients they will not grow.
If the seeds are planted too shallow or too deep they will not grow.
If weeds are allowed to remain the seeds will be choked out
If the seeds do not receive enough water they will not germinate and will not grow.
As I planted our garden this year I thought about a different kind of seed.
” Once a farmer went out to scatter seed in his fields. Some seeds fell along a trail where they were crushed underfoot by people walking by. Birds flew in and ate those seeds. Other seeds fell on gravel. Those seeds sprouted but soon withered, depleted of moisture under the scorching sun. Still other seeds landed among thorns where they grew for a while, but eventually the thorns stunted them so they couldn’t thrive or bear fruit. But some seeds fell into good soil—soft, moist, free from thorns. These seeds not only grew, but they also produced more seeds, a hundred times what the farmer originally planted. If you have ears, hear My meaning!” Luke 8:5-8
I see two applications in this Parable
The first application reveals God as the sower, planting seeds through His word. We see in the parable that not all the seed grows, but God plants many seeds in order to ensure that some seeds bear fruit. The final harvest, however, is worth any amount of hard work. *
The second application concerns the soil of our heart and the seed that God wants to plant there. I found this in my Promise Keepers study Bible
We have to be sure we prepare the soil so the seed takes root. We follow the example of the farmer. He has set aside time to plow, weed, fertilize and water the soil. The farmer knows good soil does not appear on its own. It requires planning, nurturing, cultivating ,and a great deal of effort.
Then same is true of our hearts. We must set aside time daily to:
Examine our heart and weed out every thought and attitude that will choke out the seeds God wants to plant there
Cultivate our heart through prayer, and water it by meditating on God’s word and His purposes for our lives.When we prepare the soil of our hearts the seed God sows there will germinate, take root and produce a harvest.
This is not only for our benefit, but through our growth we become sowers also, following the example of our Father by sowing His seed in the world around us!
*The Voice Bible commentary