OK. Show of hands. How many of you like tomatoes? Hmmm…not very many hands. Maybe I shouldn’t have asked about MY favorite vegetable. Even my own grown kids don’t like tomatoes. Let’s see. How about corn? How many of you like corn? Good, more hands. I know a lot more about corn than I do tomatoes. We are the Cornhusker state, after all! And thanks to abundant rain, moderate temperatures and no hailstorms, the corn here in Nebraska is the tallest I have ever seen it. My daughter is married to a farmer and I am always surprised at the dramatic changes I see in the fields every time I go out to visit. It’s almost like magic.
But we know it isn’t magic, don’t we? We know that corn was weeded and watered and sprayed and worried over by some patient farmer. But before he could do any weeding or watering or spraying or worrying, he had to do some planting.
Have you ever seen a corn seed? Technically, they call them kernels, or seed corn, but not being of the farm mentality I call them corn seeds. You know, like radish seeds, or watermelon seeds, or carrot seeds. Anyway, these seeds sure aren’t very big. And looking at them, you would never guess that they would grow into those huge stalks bearing dozens of delicious yellow ears. But one seed is all a farmer needs to grow a stalk of corn. And one seed is all God needs to grow a mountain-moving faith.
Jesus said, “How can I describe the Kingdom of God? What story should I use to illustrate it? It is like a mustard seed planted in the ground. It is the smallest of all seeds, but it becomes the largest of all garden plants; it grows long branches, and birds can make nests in its shade.” Mark 4:30-32 (NLT)
Jesus used the illustration of a mustard seed to tell His listeners that faith, however small, connects us to God. He takes this little piece of faith, this little seed, and plants it in our hearts. We do what we can to help it grow. We read in our Bible, we pray, we treat others well, we use kind words. But it is God who makes it grow. How? By feeding it with the greatest gift known to man – His love.
“They will be my people, and I will be their God. I will give them singleness of heart and action, so that they will always fear me for their own good and the good of their children after them. I will make an everlasting covenant with them: I will never stop doing good to them, and I will inspire them to fear me, so that they will never turn away from me. I will rejoice in doing them good and will assuredly plant them in this land with all my heart and soul.” Jeremiah 32:38-41 (NIV)
Just a little seed of faith, watered with prayer and nurtured by an outpouring of God’s love, and before you know it there is full-grown, nothing-is-impossible-with-God, mountain-moving faith. Pretty neat, huh? That God can take this little seed that He has planted in our hearts and turn it into something so big and so unshakable that we can do anything in His power?
“You don’t have enough faith,” Jesus told them. “I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it would move. Nothing would be impossible.” Matthew 17:20-21 (NLT)
Sometimes it’s hard to find that faith isn’t it? Maybe it seems like that seed has been in the ground an awful long time. Or maybe we think there have been a few too many storms and way too much damage for it to ever grow. Or maybe it WAS growing but we forget to water and care for it. Don’t worry. That seed is still there. And God promises that He will help us grow it into faith that moves mountains.
Just like God planted the seed to stand and pray for their family in the hearts of your dad or your mom, He planted a seed of faith in yours. Can you see it? Can you feel it growing? Can you hear His whisper, “Have faith!”
Sow righteousness, reap love. It’s time to till the ready earth, it’s time to dig in with God, Until he arrives with righteousness ripe for harvest. Hosea 10:12 (The Message)
Kim, a stander in Nebraska
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Unless otherwise noted, scripture quoted are from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2010 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.