I have the opposite of a green thumb, whatever color that might be! I avoid walking through the plant sections in Home Depot or going to flower shops, because as I walk through, things start dying! My husband, Douglas, is just the opposite, for he has a super-green thumb. Anything he plants comes up beautifully and in such abundance that we end up placing vegetables on our neighbors’ porches, and I do not even know if they like vegetables. I envy him this ability, but I understand that, although Douglas plants the seeds, and I sometimes help water them, the bountifulness of the crop comes from God, our Provider.
Yet, even though I have not had much success with flowers and vegetables, I work continuously to plant the seeds of salvation into the hearts of those who have not yet accepted Christ Jesus as their Savior. My planting starts with sharing my stories with others, in the hope that in hearing or reading the stories of struggle, pain, grief, and triumph over each one, some of my faith will fall into the ground of their hearts, and they will seek to know more about God’s grace and mercy. I am aware that I may never know if the seed grows to fruition, because I may never meet the people who believe through my stories. So, my prayer is always that the Lord will send someone else to water the seed or to weed the hearts of the pain and suffering that can cause the seed to fail to take root, and then to do what He does best: make the seed grow or give the increase.
It is not important to me to get credit for the increase in the numbers of people being saved. God simply asks me to begin the conversation through my stories, which is why I started this blog. What is more important is that people have a chance for eternal life, meaning that the death of the physical body is not the end, as the spirit continues to live in the presence of God and His Son, Jesus Christ. In 1 Corinthians 3, the apostle Paul discusses how the people of Corinth were defining themselves according to who planted the seeds of the Good News in their hearts, saying they belonged to Paul or to Apollos, rather than to Jesus Christ. Paul was upset that the people were focused more on who did the work instead of allowing the work that had been done in their lives to take root and produce the fruit of Christian maturity.
In 1 Corinthians 3: 5-9, Paul states, “After all, who is Apollos? Who is Paul? We are only God’s servants through whom you believed the Good News. Each of us did the work the Lord gave us. I planted the seed in your hearts, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow. It’s not important who does the planting, or who does the watering. What’s important is that God makes the seed grow. The one who plants and the one who waters work together with the same purpose. And both will be rewarded for their own hard work. For we are both God’s workers. And you are God’s field. You are God’s building.”
Thankfully, I do not need a green thumb to do God’s work, just a willingness to write my stories, and with a little humor thrown in, tell of God’s grace and mercy in my life. I am still thankful for the young white Baptist college students who came into my neighborhood when I was about nine years old and taught me about a Savior I did not know. They planted seeds by giving us Bible verses to learn. If we learned the verses by the time they returned the following month, we received pretty ceramic dishes with a Bible verse on them. I only wanted to win the dishes and show how smart I was, but from those seeds, I started to wonder about this wonderful Man who loved me, a child abandoned by her parents.
And when we started going to church, the pastor watered the seeds that the young students had planted, and one Sunday morning, God gave the increase, as the beauty of His glory, a wonderful light that I cannot adequately describe, filled the church and landed on me. I came to believe in the reality of the Father and the Son. I still have to read my Bible, so that the weeds of everyday life do not stuff out my faith and cause me to wither in my belief, and when I plant a seed, my faith is renewed all over again. Hopefully, through my blog posts, people will see God and feel His presence, knowing that He is not partial and that the love He gives to me, He is willing and able to give to you. Like Paul, I am just a servant.
Thank you for the opportunity to work on your behalf. Thank you for allowing me to tell my stories, and, Holy Spirit, thank you for bringing the stories to my remembrance and showing me how they fit the Scriptures in ways that may bring salvation to others. I am Your servant, O Lord, and one of the sheep of Your pasture. I am not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Let other water the seeds that are sown from this blog site, and then Lord, in Your time and way, bring the increase. In Jesus’s Name, Amen.