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Oct 13

A Harvest of Faith

The oblong ice cream containers sit on my window sill.  Not very attractive, but then with all of the renovating going on around here, they sort of fit in with the “décor”.

 

The containers are filled with dirt and little green shoots are starting to show…the promise of some healthy lettuce and spinach come spring.

 

Frankly, they don’t look like much right now.  Who could guess that from those tender shoots will grow large leafy greens that provide so much nutrition?  Pretty soon I will carefully dig out those shoots and transplant them in our garden.  The snow will fall and cover them. That part sort of seemed suspicious to me last year – my mother-in-law (major gardening expert) assured me that the snow wouldn’t kill my little plants – in fact, it would protect them and then give them the much needed moisture come spring when the snow melts.

 

And do you know what? She was right.

 

And all of this has me thinking of my kids.

 

Okay – I know I’m sort of a random person…but I really am going somewhere with this.

 

Our kids are born like little seeds.

 

They are not blank slates, as we are told. The Bible says that every part of their lives is recorded in heaven and that the Word of God is written in the hearts of men.  Just like a seed that is planted isn’t a random seed that will grow to become whatever you wish it would become, a child already has a destiny, a bent, a will and a purpose.

harvest

God has created us as parents with a call to guide those little destinies, to shape the bent of their will, and lead them toward their purpose.  Just as I take that sliver of a lettuce seed and carefully lay it in the hole I have made in the dirt, and then cover it up and water it; my calling as a mom is to nurture my precious child with God’s Word and prayer so that the precious seed of faith that is already placed in His heart will grow into a healthy, strong tree that will withstand the pressures of this life.

 

But lest you think that I somehow supposed that only good things lie dormant in the hearts of my two precious children (believe me, I am NOT that naive. Only this morning this proved to be false!), there are “weeds” we can’t always see right away.

 

My garden is full of these “crawler weeds” – as I call them. They are long vines that wind themselves around a plant and choke the life out of it. Nasty little things! If I let my garden go for even one week, I have tons of those nasty weeds all over the place.  If I fail to pull them out, the only “harvest” I’ll have is a harvest of useless, out-of-control weeds.

Proverbs says “A child left to himself brings his mother shame.”

 

Godly children don’t just happen.  The church will not raise godly children.  Your youth group will not produce godly teenagers; your private school will not root evil out of their hearts.

 

To produce a harvest of godly men and women who will bring God’s Kingdom to bear in the next generation, parents must do the hard work now.  Plowing, planting, weeding, watering and nurturing their lives.

 

You will not see results right away. Your toddler will throw tantrums, your preschooler will say “no!”, your school-aged child will get in fights on the playground and your teenager will probably think you’re dumb.

 

But just as I do not give up on my garden after pulling up the same kinds of weeds every other day, I refuse to give up on nurturing my children.  It’s not an easy job, it is sometimes a very thankless job (I’ve never had a tomato plant reach up and kiss me on the cheek for having yanked out a handful of weeds!) because I know that one day I will look at my children and see in them the fruit of the labor I invested.

 

When they answer the call of God on their lives, when they lead the first lost soul to the kingdom, when they discover for themselves the first hidden truth in God’s Word, when they sense for the first time the weight of sin’s guilt on their hearts, when they take the first step to stand alone against temptation – All of the discipline and training, sleepless nights and tearful prayers will be worth it!

 

For this is my task, it is my calling – to nurture the tiny, precious seeds God has entrusted to my care.

 

rosilindsiggie

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