The gift of seeds
Luke 8: 4-15 (NIVUK)
4 While a large crowd was gathering and people were coming to Jesus from town after town, he told this parable: 5 ‘A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds ate it up. 6 Some fell on rocky ground, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.’
When he said this, he called out, ‘Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.’
9 His disciples asked him what this parable meant. 10 He said, ‘The knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of God has been given to you, but to others I speak in parables, so that,
‘“though seeing, they may not see;
though hearing, they may not understand.”
11 ‘This is the meaning of the parable: the seed is the word of God. 12 Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. 13 Those on the rocky ground are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away.14 The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature. 15 But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.
You are soil and are given the gift of seeds.
You are soil and the ongoing encounters with God in everyday life are the seeds.
You are the soil and it is up to you what you do with the seeds.
In everyday life you can encounter God: in the Bible, in prayer, in creation and in each other. All of these different encounters plant in you a seed that could grow, seeing the humanity of those we encounter, all of these seeds could grow into God’s love in action.
If you look at your loved ones and the face of a stranger and see their humanity then seeds are in good soil. If you respond to the hungry with a donation of food and if you respond to the thirsty with a glass of life-giving water then seeds are in good soil. However, if you see the refugee in a boat on the ocean and want to turn them back or after reading your Bible think that those on the margins should be the first hit by austerity then the thistles of life need pruned.
The upkeep of your soil is a difficult and personal business that we undertake together. It takes seeking encounter with God in the extraordinary but also the ordinary. It takes seeing God in the ordinary everyday stuff of prayer and people.
Help me to encounter you in the ordinary and extraordinary
Plant in my heart seeds of love and compassion
Help me to see you in all people