It’s Always Worth The Wait!
We plant seeds in the spring and bulbs in the fall. In the spring, we get a quick return on our labor. In only a few short weeks, and sometimes days, we see little green shoots of new growth peeking up out of the soil. In the fall, we have to have a bit more faith as we plant bulbs into the ground that will sleep all winter long. Then, when they burst through the soil the following year, we rejoice in the new life. New growth is always exciting and inspiring!
Sometimes, the winter months in our lives are long. We plant seeds over and over again in the hearts and minds of those we teach in Bible School, Sunday School, Life Groups and Children’s Church. Week after week, we invest in the lives of those who attend our churches – and those we touch in our communities with the love of Christ. We try our best to uphold the hurting and share a listening ear with the lonely. We sacrifice time and money in so many different ways. The goal, to spread God’s love and the amazing story of salvation to all who may believe.
But, oh how quickly we lose heart when someone in our church family leaves our fellowship or strays from their faith. We’re tempted to look to heaven and ask “Why, God? How can this be a part of the plan?” I was faithful. We’ve been planting seeds for years, and I know there has been plenty of watering going on too. “Why aren’t we seeing results for our labor, Lord?”
And then, God reminds me of my own transformation journey. It wasn’t all smooth sailing. I hit some major bumps in the road, and I have no doubt that some of the faithful watched me stumble and fall. Too stubborn to take their advice or submit my will to the Father. Oh, I knew better. I just chose not to listen and obey – at least for a season…or two.
So, how can we stay faithful in our desire to plant seeds of faith into other's lives even when we don’t see any fruit?
1. We must acknowledge that we have an enemy.
“The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” 2 Corinthians 4:4
2. We must humble ourselves and trust God’s timing.
“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them.” John 6:44a
3. We must believe that God wants all to be saved.
“The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” 2 Peter 3:9
4. We must be faithful to share the Gospel message.
“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9
God is ultimately in control. We are simply asked to be faithful to proclaim His truth to the world around us. And, maybe – just maybe – we’ll get a glimpse of the brand new growth coming through the dry ground of a life we’ve cared about, prayed for and shared Christ with. To witness a life transformed by the grace of God is always, always, always worth the wait!
**Special note **
Today, I got to give a hug to Matt, a young man we had worked with over 20 years ago. He and his family came to our church for several years and showed some interest in understanding more about the Gospel. Eventually, the couple split up and went their separate ways. I’ve not personally seen either husband or wife in nearly two decades. But, a new connection has been made – through one of our grandsons. God is so amazing!!! Matt has been transformed through Christ, and my husband and I have now been blessed and privileged to witness that transformation. First, through his testimony (see below) and today face-to-face.
It’s always worth it. Don’t ever give up sharing, hoping and living out the Gospel message in your life. You just never know who is listening, watching or growing!
Matt's testimony of God’s work in his life was posted as a facebook video. Within the video, he also shares his tremendous heart for individuals in the medical field – especially first responders. The video is 40 minutes in length (he said he had planned for 10 minutes), but if you have the time it is well worth it. Matt does a great job laying out the salvation message to all who have ears to hear. He is a life changed!