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A Simple, Single Seed

If a man shouted to an unplanted field, “Give me a harvest!” the soil would but smile and ask, “Who is this fool who brings me his need, but plants no seed?”


Yet, many are we who scream to the cosmos, “Bless me! Grant me good life! Bring me joy and peace and love and prosperity,” expecting that bountiful harvest all the while having planted no seeds.


Seeds are simply profound. Small. Plentiful. Hardly noticed by those of us who do our hunting and gathering at the local grocery store. But that simple seed falling to the ground has been packed by Providence with incredible power. Only by its process do we prosper.


It was to a seed that Jesus compared a human life. “Unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies,” he said, “it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds” (John 12:24). The secret of success is found, not in grasping, but in giving; not in picking the produce, but in sowing the seeds.


Robert Louis Stevenson wrote, “Do not judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seed you plant.” But that is exactly what I am tempted to do – to judge the day by what I get, rather than what I give. Jesus calls us to a different way - the way of a seed. It’s his way, a way that gives completely of itself so that its life is absorbed and sprouts and multiplies.


Near my office stands an admirable oak. Stretching sixty feet toward the heavens and spanning its arms equally wide, it is yet a youngster. It will likely linger long after I have left – its life lasting several hundred years. Through the centuries, it will drop thousands of new seeds to ground. Generations of animals will be fed. My great, great grandchildren might enjoy its shade. Thousands will inhale its oxygen and enjoy its autumn leaves. And offspring are already growing up to continue its legacy. All because a seed fell to the ground and died.


How much more might a single soul bless the world by simple selfless acts? Jesus certainly did. He surrendered and fell to the ground. But he sprang up again, and the world was forever changed.


“A man will pick only what he plants,” (Galatians 6:7 KWV).


A simple, single seed. Let’s plant one today. Let’s be one today.

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