Monday, March 18, 2019

No Planting, No Fruit - Martin Wiles

I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow. 1 Corinthians3:6 NLT

We planted the sapling, but never knew whether we’d see a tree.

During a special festival in the town where my wife and I lived at the time, a local resident gave us a maple sapling. We picked out a spot in the backyard, dug a hole, inserted the sapling, packed it, staked and tied it with sticks, and watered it well. The first year, the little tree looked pitiful. In fact, we wondered whether we’d see life the next spring. We did. The second year wasn’t much better. The sapling grew a smidgen, but again we wondered whether we’d see leaves the next year. Again, we did.

Then we moved three hours away. We often wondered what happened to our tree. We rented the home we have moved from, and other renters had moved in. We wondered whether they’d care for the yard—and our tree—as we had.

Several years later, we moved back to a neighboring town and one day rode by the house we once lived in. There was our tree, healthy and tall. Someone had watered and tended to it. A strong healthy tree had replaced the tender sapling we planted.
Paul says the same happens in the spiritual realm. He planted new churches on several missionary journeys. Others came behind him and watered his work. God then gave the growth.

We plant, negatively or positively. We either plant good seeds in peoples’ lives or bad seeds. Good seeds such as acts of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, faithfulness, and goodness. Or bad seeds such as hate, anger, unforgiveness, strife, and gossip.

Others water what we plant. In fact, we might be the waterer. At any given moment, we may never know whether we are planting or watering, but both are equally important.

The important part is that we plant and that we do it intentionally. We can sow good seeds in others’ lives on purpose. If we don’t, we may automatically—or unintentionally—sow corrupt seeds.

When we plant good seeds, God causes growth. A person may come to know Him as Savior. If they already do, our watering may help them grow spiritually—or even pursue God’s call on their lives. We never know what type of tree will grow from the saplings we plant or water.

Find some way you can plant or water a seed in someone’s life today.

Prayer: Father, give us opportunities to plant and water seeds in people’s lives. 

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