Planting season for 2016 concluded here in Iowa recently. Corn and soybeans are the two staples farmers in this area plant – and plenty of it. In this county alone, over 400,000 acres are farmed. In 2015, approximately 41 million bushels of corn were harvested and approximately 11 million bushels of soybeans were harvested.
Suppose a farmer bought all soybean seed because s/he found that it was cheaper than corn seed, but because corn was more profitable to harvest, expected to harvest corn in the fall. How might you respond to that farmer’s confusion when every field produced soybeans and not corn? You’d call that farmer crazy. If one plants soybeans, one will harvest soybeans.
And yet this very simple truth is not often applied to other areas of life. This truth is called the “reaping what you sow” truth.
The Apostle Paul, in his letter to the believers in the region of Galatia says it this way: “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a person sows, this also will s/he reap. Because the one who sows unto his/her own flesh will reap corruption from the flesh, but the one who sows unto the Spirit will reap from the Spirit eternal life.”
When followers of Jesus sow things other than love (i.e., judgment, condemnation, discord, harshness, misery, etc.), should they be surprised that that is exactly what they reap? Yet there are so many times when they are shocked by what they are reaping. And just like with that farmer, those followers of Jesus should be called crazy. They have no reason to be confused. They are reaping what they are sowing. They should not be surprised when they are presented with thistles and thorns to reap because that’s exactly what they have sown in the first place.
If followers of Jesus want to reap love from people and situations, they must first sow the seeds of love. If followers want to reap respect from people, they must first sow the seeds of respect in that “field.”
This truth is true and applicable to all situations and people. If one desires to have a certain outcome (harvest), then one must first plant that type of seed into person or situation (field).
This is the very truth upon which God acted. The Apostle John tells us that “we love God because He first loved us.” God wanted to reap love from us. Therefore, because He is the origin of the truth of “reap what you sow,” He first sowed love into us so that love back may be harvested.
It is imperative that this truth be applied to all aspects of life in how we relate to others and situations. We must first sow the right seed.
Consider today what type of seed you are planting in whatever “field” you find yourself.