Sowing and Reaping

Sowing and Reaping

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Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to attend a retreat with my small group. And one of the sermons was about Sowing and Reaping based on Galatians 6:7-10.

Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. 8 For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. 9 And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. 10 So then, gas we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith. –Galatians 6:7-10 (ESV)

As a gardener, I understand the concept of sowing and reaping. I spend a few days in the spring sowing seeds of some of my favorites fruits and vegetables. And a few months later, I look forward to reaping the harvest of what I’ve sowed.

But I don’t always apply this concept in my own life. Sometimes I think I’m sowing cucumber seeds… but I end up with tomatoes (or other fruit/vegetable). Have you ever felt like that? You feel like you’re doing all the “right” things, but only end up with disappointment and frustration? Or maybe you sowed the right seeds, and do all that you can to keep the plants alive, but don’t seem to see a good harvest? Perhaps these verses will be encouraging to you today.

In the sermon, our pastor highlighted two groups of people: those who are misled, and those who are discouraged.

Those who are misled think that they are sowing proper seeds, but expect something completely different (verse 6-8). They find themselves often shocked at their circumstances and seem to blame everyone else without looking at their own hearts. They believe the lies that the world tells them, and feed it to their souls. I felt this way when I found myself unemployed after graduate school. I blamed the institutions for not hiring me. I blamed the fact that I moved states after graduate school–perhaps if I had stayed in the same state, I would’ve gotten a job. I blamed interviewees for not being able to see my true potential. I believed the lies that I wasn’t good enough, smart enough, able enough for the job. All the while, I felt justified in thinking that I had done everything I could do to get a job. I updated my resume, and sent them far and wide. I made phone calls and inquiries. I attended networking events to try and make connections. But my motives were all wrong. Only after examining my heart did I realize that I was doing the right thing, but with the wrong heart. I was proud in thinking that I deserved a job. I was resentful of institutions that interviewed me but denied me a job. Why didn’t I have a job yet? Isn’t that what I’m supposed to get after all this work? And even though I prayed about my situation, I didn’t always ask, “God, is this what you want of me?”

Then there’s the other group who are discouraged (verses 9-10). They are truly doing the right things, with the right heart, but they are getting tired. Getting “weary of doing good” (verse 9). Have you ever felt like this? Perhaps you’ve spent years, maybe decades, praying for a loved one to come to know Jesus. Or doing your best to remain patient with your children when they turn away from you? Or asking God for healing over a lifelong ailment? There are some trials in our lives that are not conquered overnight, and after a long time, it wears you down. But the encouragement is there in verse 9: You WILL reap, IF you don’t give up. It could take years, decades, or even after you pass. But in God’s timing, there will be a harvest, and it will be reaped.

Where do you find yourself today? Do you find yourself needing to examine your heart because you are being misled? Are there lies that you have been believing about your current circumstances? If you find yourself in this first group, take a moment to remind yourself that God IS good, and that when you are seeking Him through the Spirit, you will reap “eternal life” (verse 8).

Or are you finding yourself in the second group? Is there a prayer request that you’ve been lifting up day after day without any answers? Is there a burden on your heart that has yet to be lifted? Brothers and sisters, do not give up! If you see someone who is going through difficult times, verse 10 clearly tells us that we need to “do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith”. If we don’t take care of our own brothers and sisters inside the church, how are we to be strengthened enough to reach out beyond the church?

I pray that as we sow seeds of faith, hope, grace, and love, we will not give up, so that we may reap a bountiful harvest in due season!

About Audrey Ko

Audrey is first and foremost, a beloved daughter of God. She is also a wife to John since 2012, a worship leader, blogger, cat owner, DIY enthusiast, and gardener. During the day, she works at a local history museum, and at night she can be found curling up with her cat and husband reading a good book or catching up on TV shows. You can read more about Audrey on her blog, The Things Unseen.

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