Today’s Scriptures:

John 6:63 – “The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life.”

John 6:68 – “But Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go?  You have the words of eternal life.”

Luke 8:11 – “Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.”

 

When we lived in the Midwest, I was the designated lawn caretaker.  Since I am a nature-lover and get a kick out of growing things, it was hardly a chore.  I was pretty bad at it at first, and had a penchant for drowning the flowers.  One time I discovered I was fertilizing a weed!

One of the things I desired most was a beautiful, green, weed-free lawn.  The bane of my horticultural existence was that particularly resistant, rebellious weed called crabgrass!  You could pull them up all day, but their seeds would blow in with the next wind and firmly plant themselves in my grass, as pretty as you please.

I’ll never forget the spiritual epiphany I had when a professional lawn man said to me: “You know how to get a weed-free lawn?  Grow thick grass.”

Excuse me, Mr. Scott, come again?  Are you telling me if I grow enough grass seed, I won’t have to dig up any more weeds?

“Precisely.  Where there is thick grass, there is no room for weeds.”

This was bigger to me than just a great idea for my next small group discussion.  This was very personal and life-changing.  You see, the soil of my heart had been bitterly poisoned by the words and deeds of others, and there were many empty places for weeds to thrive.  I had tried for years to pull them out, one by one, only to find another weed growing in its place.  My epiphany that day was: stop the endless chore of pulling up weeds; instead, plant the Word of God and the weeds won’t have room to grow!  That is the day I began intentional planting.

The Blessed Life

I’m going to make a bold statement to you:  “Everything you need for a blessed life, you have right now in seed form.”  Do you believe that?  Let’s break it down according to God’s Word:

In Genesis 1:29 God said, “See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed.”  Right from the beginning, God made everything on the earth to reproduce from a seed, including mankind.  This is God’s strategy for life growth: sow the seed.  And God blessed it all.  In the parable of the sower, Jesus says, “The seed is the word of God” (Luke 8:11).  Since every seed reproduces after its own kind, and since the Word of God is blessed, our lives become blessed when we sow it: “for whatever one sows, that will he also reap” (Galatians 6:7, ESV).

Promises Are Seeds

When I was a kid we sang a song called “Every Promise In The Book Is Mine!”  I loved that song (who doesn’t like singing about promises?)  I didn’t realize it then, but now I know that every promise of God is a seed.  The promise does not come full grown. I have to plant it and nurture it.  Only then will I eat of its fruit.

It Is What It Is

You don’t plant broccoli and reap turnips. You might be laughing at how obvious that sounds, but I did this for years before I learned how to apply the principle of sowing and reaping (Galatians 6:7).  I would think about how much someone had hurt me (seed of bitterness) and wonder why I had no joy.  I would read too many news reports (seeds of violence and fear) and wonder why I had no peace.  Philippians 4:6-8 has become my life’s scripture, seeds that I have reaped a bountiful harvest from (bless yourself today by planting this passage in your heart)!

When you open up fruit, you will find the same kind of seeds on the inside.  This is the same with people – what you see and hear on the outside is the fruit of the seeds that were planted on the inside, whether good or bad.

Bad Stuff Grows in Empty Spots

Have you ever seen a vacant lot that has no weeds?  It would be a rare thing, because nature does not allow it.  Leave something alone long enough, and bad things will show up.  Proverbs 24:30-31, “I went by the field of … the man devoid of understanding; and there it was, all overgrown with thorns; its surface was covered with nettles.”  Your heart will never remain empty for long – the law of nature demands something to grow there.  As I learned with my lawn, bad things grow in sparse places.

The Seed of Faith

One day the disciples said to Jesus, “Lord, increase our faith.”   As usual, Jesus’ answer forced them to think:  “If you have faith as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be pulled up by the roots and be planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.”  I used to think this meant it didn’t matter if you had small faith, but that’s not what the scriptures teach.  Jesus admired great faith and rebuked small faith.  In Matthew 13:31 He says when it is grown the mustard seed becomes a tree.  He wasn’t saying it was okay to have tiny faith, but that great faith starts with a tiny seed and grows into tremendous usefulness.  But it starts with a seed that is planted and cultivated.

The seed of faith produces miracles – Jesus said, “If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, you shall ask what you will, and it shall be done unto you” (John 15:7).

The reason we call it the “Living” Bible is because it is not like any other book – the words in it are God-breathed and are actually alive with His DNA.  When you read it, the life that is in the seed begins to grow, pushing out all the other “weeds” that have sprung up in your heart.  Just like a beautiful lawn, when the Word is thick and lush, there will be no room for weeds like bitterness, anger, depression or fear.  You will truly begin to live!

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