By: Lauren Thomas
Seeds are magical. But waiting for growth? Not so magical.
A few weeks ago I planted seeds in my raised garden. This year, my vision was to have a small cut-flower garden with zinnias, cosmos, marigolds, and bachelor’s buttons. All these seeds were supposed to sprout within 5-14 days. But after 2 weeks of no sprouts whatsoever, my investigation led me to discover a small rodent had taken up residence in the garden and had, most likely, been eating my seedlings. So after…disposing…of the rodent, I had to start my garden from scratch again. So frustrating!
But isn’t it magical to watch seeds germinate, put out tiny leaves, and eventually become plants that produce gorgeous flowers? It is amazing that everything needed to make a plant is contained in a tiny seed. All that seed needs are the right conditions.
It reminds me of the parable of the sower in Matthew 13. The seed in this parable represents the word of God, or the Gospel. Everything needed to produce a harvest is contained in that seed (see Matthew 13:1-9; 18-23).
Matthew 13:23 (ESV)
As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.”
When God plants something in your heart, he is able to make it grow into what he intended. The waiting period can be frustrating. The waiting can be filled with doubt. But we have work to do as we wait for seeds to germinate.
Philippians 1:6 (ESV)
And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.
First, remember that different seeds require different germination periods. By reading the backs of seed packets, you’ll learn that some take days; others, weeks to germinate! Seeds God plants in our hearts are no different. God might place a calling in your life that takes time to come to fruition. And sometimes you will have growth that emerges suddenly. If you get caught up in comparing your season and growth with another woman’s, you will undoubtedly become discouraged. Guard against that by remembering different seeds have different germination periods.
Next, remember that different conditions are required for different seeds to germinate. Did you know that some seeds literally require fire to be activated? Others need long periods of cold. Some need darkness. Others need to be “scarred” or scratched to allow water uptake. Think of the comparisons this yields in our lives! Just because you are facing fire or betrayal or challenging circumstances, doesn’t mean things aren’t germinating just under the surface, out of sight. In fact, what you are facing might just be the conditions needed to cause that seed to germinate!
Finally, we must protect those seeds from little rodents, or birds that might snatch the seed, as Jesus told us in Matthew 13. We need to make sure our hearts are receptive to what God is doing in us, that the soil of our hearts is fertile. We must make room for growth by ripping up the weeds that would threaten what God has planted in us.
Guard what God has planted in you and watch it germinate!
How can you protect what God has planted in you?
Which struggle do you most resonate with: comparing growth, doubting growth, or guarding the seed?