2 Corinthians 9:6 “Remember this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.” NIV
The joke around my family is that plants come to my backyard to die. The kids and sweetheart joke about how many gravestones they need to buy for all my plants, especially my vegetable garden. I have to admit that my track record since moving off the farm has been pretty dismal. Usually my tomatoes and peppers end up costing me about fifty dollars each. Each year I buy herb plants only to watch them wither away to nothingness long before I use them. Well this year I finally proved myself a master gardener. Ok, lest I get struck by lightning for telling a whopping story, I admit that I only proved that I could get at least one tomato from a tomato plant.
This picture proves that I was able to successfully grow and harvest one tomato which I promptly ate for dinner. I have another one ripening which I intend to eat with cream cheese and a bagel for breakfast probably on Wednesday if no bugs descend upon it between now and then.
If you remember I have mentioned that I had a farm in my former life. There was a time when I grew tomatoes and green beans to sell in a roadside stand in front of our house. To have to admit that I used to grow thousands of tomatoes and now I can’t even grow one plant successfully is very frustrating. This year, before planting season I sat down to try to find out what I was doing wrong. First I realized that here in hell, I mean here in Texas, I have to start my plants at Christmas. Ok, well not exactly that early but seriously earlier than in the more temperate growing climate of North Carolina. I also admit that I totally padded my chances by buying a more mature plant already in a large pot. And yes. So far this one tomato is worth about 12 dollars. How sad is that! But it sure tasted good.
My pastor, Kerry Shook, has been doing a daily blog called 40 days and nights. blog.woodlandschurch.tv I start each morning with a scripture and end each night with the same scripture. It has really made me view each day with a different perspective. I already start my day with my devotions but this is really helping me to focus on specific scriptures for a week at a time. The meanings have become deeper and the words have stayed with me in a more spiritual way. This week Pastor Kerry is using scriptures about the importance of planting and harvesting. This morning he talked about farmers planting every last seed with the expectation of harvesting a bumper crop. From one tomato seed will grow a dozen or more tomatoes from each plant. (one would hope) He also talked about the fact that if you plant beans you won’t harvest corn. After planting, you must patiently await the growth of the plant. You must tend it, fertilize it, nurture it, and then harvest it. In my experience, sometimes you might not even be the one who gets to do the harvesting. I have planted and grown plants for other people to place in their gardens. I never get to see the end results of those plants.
I thought a lot about this concept this morning. How important it is to realize that it just takes one small seed to plant the love of Christ in someones heart. So many people planted that seed in youngest daughter’s life over the last year. Most of them have no idea of the worth of that seed. What grew in her heart has spread to her fiance and will take root in in sweet baby Lyric. In a life that could have gone so wrong, those seeds became beautiful expressions of love and encouragement. The Master Gardener never stopped tending His beautiful garden, even when the plants seemed to have no chance of producing a harvest. As I watch my youngest daughter move forward in her life, I am grateful for the amazing harvest that has come from all the gardeners who tenderly nurtured her along. I pray that I can sow His seeds generously so that His garden will continue to grow in my life.