I’m writing after a weekend of rooting around in the soil, flowers, veggies and weeds that comprise our backyard. Among my ruminations are two ideas to add as a possible addendum to Jesus’ parable about The Sower.
Some seeds never germinate.
Every year, no matter the quality of the *seeds or the condition of the soil, fewer seeds germinate than the number that I planted. As a sower, I’m pretty sure I’ve followed all the instructions, doing what’s right for the seeds. Whatever the cause, though, a percentage of them don’t take root.
The lesson? Some of the seed-sowing that has occurred in my life—career, relationships, writing, acting justly—will never develop. (Given how long I’ve lived, that’s a lot of seeding that may have ended up at zero!) Another lesson: No one—not even The Sower—promises 100% success in my life’s mission. That should always humble me!
Other seeds wait a long time before sprouting.
Preparing the soil each spring, I am surprised by Mystery Plants—veggies, flowers and native prairie plants—that were not around last year. In some cases, the new plants—usually flowers—come from last year’s sowing. The seeds have waited for just the right time to germinate. I did nothing to cause the growth of new vegetation.
The lesson here? Patience. No matter my eagerness to see results, it’s always true that my words and actions may require more time to sink in, take root and sprout—to accomplish something good. I should give amazed thanks to God whenever something worthwhile does result.
I continue to hope that God’s providence—and the Spirit’s seeding?—will make use of my life as part of God’s continued sowing of grace and love!
And I will keep doing the same….
*My preferred source is Seed Savers Exchange. Located in Decorah, IA, these good folks have for decades carried out their vital mission to “Conserve and promote America’s culturally diverse but endangered garden and food crop heritage for future generations by collecting, growing, and sharing heirloom seeds and plants.” (Seed Savers Exchange Heirloom Seeds