Be careful, you reap what you sow. I have heard this all my life, and for along time I thought it was a superstition.
Now it is a reminder to watch what I say and do. Everything always has a way of returning to you.
If I sow bad behavior, I get bad consequences. If I sow good behavior, I get good consequences. The concept is simple enough right? But what if there’s something deeper than behavior in the concept?
Jesus’ audience was all too familiar with this principle. Their lives revolved around the law of sowing and reaping because they depended on farming to survive. A farmer sows, or plants a certain seed and expects to get that same type of plant in return.
Jesus talked about sowing and reaping as an allegory- a story with in a hidden meaning. Scripture uses the picture of a farmer who plants a seed expecting something to grow as a way to show that our daily decisions and actions also have a definite return.
Sowing is Spiritual
In Galatians 6 8-9, Paul explains that sowing is the start of the battle for our hearts:
Whoever sows to please the flash, from flesh they will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap enteral life. We shouldn’t become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
Our lives will reflect what we plant in our hearts. We can sow in one of two way’s and the decision is ours.
I remember something that happened to my son when he was younger, everything Job he ever had he complain about to everyone about how ignorant his boss was, or mean to the employees. One day he would just quit going to work. We live in a small town. My advice to him if you can’t hold on to job because of your attitude. The word was going to get around and your not going to find a boss that’s going to give to a chance. Don’t burn your bridges.
Finally when no one would hire him. He met a girlfriend going to college, he decided to go to college that went well for about a year. And they both dropped out and moved away. Slowly but surely he started this same work behavior. He finally realized he WAS burning his bridges. He decided he needed to straighten up. Now he has a successful career.
The point is everything you do or say comes back to you. I was a hateful, rude, arrogant person when I was younger. Then I expected the same people that got the brunt of my hate to be polite and respectful towards me, that wasn’t how it worked.
It wasn’t until I chose how to love pepole, that my life started to go right.
When we sow to please God, we are doing something that will be beneficial. When our decisions and actions are done out of obedience to God and His Word- like loving a friend well or practicing generosity and hospitality-we will receive a blessing that far outlives this life.
But when our thoughts and actions are led by our sinful nature, we are not pleasing God, or anyone else around us. We are actually pleasing Satan. When sin guides our lives, we will be sow into a destructive further.
The Bible teaches us another important Pringle in farming in Galatians 6:7 about reaping what you sow.
A farmer sows a mustard seed, and in return a mustard plant grows. A farmer would never plant a mustard seed with the expectation of growing a watermelon vine. Likewise, we can expect our thoughts and actions to produce fruit with their kind. For example, if our actions are pleasing to God and we love those around us, we can expect to see love blossom while we experience love ourselves.
Like the laws of nature, the reverse is also true. We cannot expect to experience all the good things God has for us in life if we never following His instruction. If we sow sin and unhealthy patterns, we can expect to experience their consequences.
What seeds are you sowing today? Are we aware that our thoughts and actions have temporary and eternal consequences, both positive and negative.
Reaping is Plentiful
A farmer plants a tine sees and over time that seed produces a plant. The plant is towering when compared to the size of the seed. The farmer reaps a sizable benefit in comparison to what he has sown.
In Matthew 13:8, Jesus said the same principle applies when we receive His word with a willing heart. When our hearts are positioned to obey and follow Jesus, He is able to multiply His work in us to create a harvest beyond what we could imagine.
A few years ago the pastor of our church preached on sowing seeds. He told us to find something in our life that needed to grow, I chose my relationship with my children, then I prayed to God and asked Him to help my sowing to grow. Pastor said the God would put in fertile ground and we needed to water it. Which meant to pray over it often and believe without a doubt it would grow. When I did, after about 8 months my children became more kind to me, my son started calling me every week. My daughter would some over and sit and talk to me instead of just rushing to see her dad.
We plant seeds that are pleasing to God, pray about them often and God does the rest. When we are generous with he has given, He meets our needs and then some. And when we love those around us well, we will never see the ripples end because of His miraculous multiplication.
Freely given freely give. If God has blessed you with extra food, then freely give someone else in need of food. Or anything else. God helps us so may help others.