If you have ever worked in agriculture or had a garden you understand the work it takes to prepare the ground, plant the seeds, and keep it watered sufficiently. Working with the Lord is the same way. One plants and one waters, but ultimately God is the one who makes it all grow.
This last weekend my grandmother went to worship the Lord face to face. I have crashed back and forth through emotions and memories, as the wound of loss is still fresh. On the one hand I am jealous she gets to see our Lord face to face. On the other I am saddened and in pain that she is gone. Yet in all of this I am joyful for all that she did for me, and I rest knowing that she is no longer in pain.
As I have sat reminiscing about her life and influence, the Holy Spirit brought a scripture to memory. It’s from Paul’s letter to the Corinthians when they were fighting over who they followed.
What then is Apollos? And what is Paul? Servants through whom you believed, even as the Lord gave opportunity to each one. I planted, Apollos watered, but God was causing the growth. So then neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but God who causes the growth. Now he who plants and he who waters are one; but each will receive his own reward according to his own labor. For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building. – 1 Cor. 3:5-9
You see, my grandmother was planter. She hands down laid the foundation for my faith and walk with the Lord. From as early as I can remember she lived a life of example everyday. Regardless of how difficult my home life was, going to her house was like a refreshing oasis in the desert.
When I would stay with her, I would wake in the early hours of the mornings to find her reading her Bible, and she would lead me in prayers at night before laying my head to sleep as a young boy.
Even though my Grandpa went to be with the Lord almost twenty years before her, I can still remember she loved and served him in their marriage just as Christ loves the church. Their relationship set an example of what I desire in my own marriage.
She instilled in me a hope and faith in God that has remained with me since then. She never stood on a stage to preach, but her life was a ministry in and of itself. I am forever thankful for her influence in my life. I am forever thankful she was a planter.
The Holy Spirit tilled the ground in my life through those years, and she was faithful in planting seeds. For her, planting was easy because she was just living her habits. She was a planter nonetheless.
Since those days as a young boy when she planted those seeds of faith, I have had many people come and water the work she started in me. Pastors, professors, friends, and now even authors (some dead some alive) have watered the ground through the years where those seeds were once planted.
I am thankful beyond words and comprehension that God has caused those seeds to blossom and grow within me. They have grown up into a tree of life. That tree of life is the life of Christ that has grown up inside up me.
His vines and branches have intertwined themselves through every fiber of the fabric of my life. Today I have the opportunity to plant seeds and water seeds in others. Sometimes I have even spread a little manure. All of this is possible because she was faithful to the Lord, and planted seeds in her grandchildren.
Let us never forget those that till the soil, plant the seeds, and water the ground for they reap harvests they may never see, because the Lord allows their work to grow.
Who were the ones that planted and watered the seeds of faith in your life? I would love to hear in a comment below.