Scripture Reading: Hosea 10:1-11:11 / Romans 8:18-39 / Psalm 89:1-8
Much can be learned when you live in a farming community. You discover there is more to farming than just “digging a little hole, planting a little seed, pouring a little water and watching it grow.” Practical and technical knowledge of soil conditions, seed selections, irrigation and fertilization are just the beginning.
Farmers must have mechanical skills to work on their equipment as well as business knowledge to manage daily, seasonal and financial decisions. They rise before dawn and work until sunset, lift things that are far to heavy and struggle with back pain all their life. Their life is not an easy one but there are some farming principles that they live by which are constant and foundational.
“You reap what you sow”…plant seed corn and reap corn, plant wheat and reap wheat. That concept isn’t difficult to understand yet man still struggles with it. Israel was treated with evil and contempt because they lived wicked lives. (Hosea 10:13) God instructed them, “Sow for yourselves righteousness and reap the fruit of unfailing love.” (vs.12) If we want God’s unfailing love to guide, protect and oversee us, then there must be the seed of righteousness in our lives.
“An unplowed field will never grow a harvest”…a plow must break through the hard ground in order for the seed to take root and grow. The monotonous chore of turning over the soil does not offer any immediate satisfaction or results. “…Break up your unplowed ground, for it is time to seek the Lord…” (vs.12) Israel did not seek God’s intervention but depended upon their strength. (vs.13) Prayer is like plowing…difficult, challenging and seemingly unproductive but it is necessary for growth and a harvest. It takes time to plow and time for the seed to grow...be diligent and hopeful. We need His intervention!
“Seed needs water to grow”…timely rain is imperative for a harvest yet a farmer cannot make it rain. Some things are within a farmer’s control but some, like the weather, are out of their control. Only God can send the rain, “for it is time to seek the Lord until he comes and showers righteousness on you.” (vs.12) The timing of God is precise…never too late or too early. Like these farming principles, let us be faithful to seek God and be faithful to our calling because God has a harvest waiting for us at the end of every planting season!