A real life lesson of the Sower and the Seed
"Becca, I have a project today. Finish up your breakfast and get your hat and gloves." Grandpa headed outside and put our lunch in a wagon he pulled to the vegetable garden.
At the edge of the garden, a box sat with the flaps open. I looked inside to see it filled with seed envelopes.
"Here's what we're gonna do." Grandpa handed me one. "Put the seeds in your hand and drop them in the furrows in front of you. Then gently kick the dirt over them." I dumped the seeds in my hand and curled my fingers to hold the mound. A breeze passed me suddenly and blew the seeds out of my hand and away from the garden.
"Grandpa, the wind blew the seeds out of my hand. There isn't going to be any corn for you. I saved a few " I held out my closed fist.
Grandpa went to the box and picked out another packet. "I always get extra. Tear the corner and shake a few in your hand as you go. That reminds me of a story. A man was planting a field." He began as he bent to drop the seeds.
"What was he planting?" I followed in the next row.
"Probably wheat. He didn't do it like we are because he had a huge field to plant. He threw handfuls of seed into the wind and let it land where it would. Kind of like when the wind blew the seeds from your hand. Some fell on good good soil like we have here. Some fell on the rocky ground at the edge of the field. Some fell on hard, unplowed ground and some blew into the thorns and weeds far from the good soil."
"That was a waste." I dropped the seeds kicking the dirt over them and half listed to the story.
"You're right. The seed that landed on the hard ground where the plow hadn't turned over the soil lay there, birds came along and ate the seeds."
"Well, that wasn't good." I tried to be interested.
Grandpa must not have heard me and went right on talking, "Some seeds landed on soil that had rocks under it. When the seed grew, it didn't have enough root and didn't get a good hold. When the sun got hot, it burned the plant and it died. Then there were some seeds that blew far from the field and into the weeds and thistles. They grew strong but the thorns and thistles choked the plant to death. The seed that fell on the good ground grew strong and it gave the farmer a good crop of wheat. So much so that he had enough for seed the next year and some to spare." Grandpa stopped because we were at the end of the row.
"What does all that mean?"
He took a cooler from the back of the wagon and poured water from the jug into a cup. "Here, we don't want you passin' out with heat. Becca, the reason I told you this is because every time you come here we pray with you and read the Bible. I know you've been to church because you said so. The word of God has been planted in your heart, but you have to decide what kind of ground it will grow in. Will you be hard and let the birds take it away? So that you do what you want to do and have nothing to do with what God wants for you? Will you have stony ground? You love to listen and even think about God sometimes but when someone else makes fun of you about going to church, you deny it. Maybe you have thorny ground. The things you hear sprout up and you love to go to church for the fun stuff; the candy, the games and camping, When you have to make a choice to give your heart to God you back away and don't do it."
I felt uncomfortable. I knew what kind of ground I was by what Grandpa described. I dug my boot into the soft earth. There was a rock there, I walked a few steps away and saw a patch of weeds growing. They made me feel worse.
"You can choose to have the good ground. That's where you hear God's plan and then follow it by following him. Do you know what being saved is?" Grandpa pinned me with his blue eyes. I couldn't move.
"Yes, it's when you know you've got sin in your heart and you're sorry about it. You ask Him to come in and take it out." I'd memorized that from Sunday School.
"That's right. You're at the age where you need to make that choice. If you don't choose Jesus as your master, I guess you know who becomes your master and he is a hard one."
I felt bad. A big lump was stuck in my throat and I couldn't swallow. What did I want? Did I just want to please Grandpa? No, I knew all along I wanted what he had. He and Grandma were happy all the time. My parents were nice and I loved them but they weren't happy.
"If I get saved, will I be happy like you, all the time?" I was worried.
"Oh yes, but that doesn't mean there won't be tests you worry about, or accidents that make you sad, or even people that will hurt your feelings. It does mean that if you tell Jesus how you feel he will be there to help you through it so it won't be so bad."
"Can I get saved now or do I have to wait for Sunday and do it at church?"
"Oh, I know a quiet spot close by where there's a stump and some soft moss for your knees. I know it because I use it all the time." We walked to his praying spot and I knelt beside him and gave my heart to Jesus.
As we walked back to the garden, Grandpa put his arm around me and I felt all warm and happy. I hoped it lasted a long time. "I'm glad I have the good ground , Grandpa."