In my job as a teacher, and in my interactions with people out in the world, I try to be that seed planter – someone who tries to live and to teach the messages of the gospel. It is sometimes hard to accept that when you speak God’s Truth to others, it seems to have no obvious sign of effect at all – as though it bounces right off of the person and back to you.
We have to remember that we are not the Harvester. Our job is simply to plant the seeds of God’s Word in our world, and to nurture them when possible. The rest we must leave us to the Master Gardener. We must always speak the Truth fearlessly, unapologetically, but do so with kindness, compassion and surrender – leaving the end results up to God. We must respect a person’s free will, as the Lord does out of love for us. We cannot force – but simply plant, and pray, and wait. Sometimes the wait is LONG, but that’s o.k. God is in control.
From the other perspective – that of the receiver of the seed – I see myself in each example given by Jesus today at different times during my life – or even on different days. Of course, I want to be that fertile soil, nourished by scripture reading, prayer, and frequent reception of the sacraments. Sometimes I do make my “dirt” a haven for the seed that is deposited there. Regretfully, at other times, I am less receptive – more rocky or thorny – choked by anxiety or fear.
In the times that we are living in – a time when things often seem so uncertain, disheartening, scary or disturbing – it is especially important to be diligent about prayer and the reception of the sacraments. We need all of the grace we can get. When we come to the Master Gardener, He fills us with the grace needed to be receptive to the seed that He wishes to plant within us. He wants to use us to bring others out of the darkness of this world and into His glorious light. If we do our best to remain rooted in Him, He promises that our lives will bear fruit “a hundred or sixty or thirty fold.” Now that’s something to be excited about!!