Thursday, February 6, 2014

God: The Master Planter

You've followed these familiar directions, haven't you?    

  • Sunlight: Full
  • Plant Depth: 1/4"
  • Plant Spacing: 6-12" 

Last week, I last wrote that seeds must not only be planted in the right kind of soil, but must also be placed at the right depth, be situated to receive appropriate sunlight, and be spaced adequately apart. I'd like to examine these aspects of planting in relation to how seeds of truth are placed in our hearts by the Master Gardener, God.  

While learning to garden, I've placed seeds in the wrong places many times.  Several seasons ago, I planted lettuce in pots on my deck.  Because the lettuce seeds were so small, I sprinkled them into place before covering them lightly with soil.  The lettuce germinated well and soon began poking through the surface.  It quickly became apparent, though, that thinning would be necessary.  If I had taken the time to appropriately space the seeds when planting, it would have saved me painstaking effort later.  At other times, I've planted seeds so close to the surface that the birds have eaten the seeds or so deep that the seeds have failed to sprout.  Over time, I've learned to be more careful about the placement of my seeds.  

As an all-knowing gardener, God hasn't had to learn by trial and error how to impart truth. Because He knows the hearts of men, He is always able to plant truth in the right place at the right time. Consider this passage from John 16.
12 "I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear [them] now. 13But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth..." (

In this passage, Jesus revealed the care He took in planting truth in the disciples' hearts. Understanding that they were unable to understand or apply certain truth at that time, He withheld that information until they were prepared to grasp it.  To me, this parallels with the care needed in planting seeds. God plants seeds at the right depths: He doesn't give us deeper truth than we can handle with grace. God plants seeds adequately apart: He doesn't dispense truth faster than we can grasp it or apply it. God plants seeds where they'll receive enough sunlight: He knows the receptivity of our hearts and will grant truth accordingly.  

I should note, of course, the contrast between garden soil and the human heart.  Unlike soil, the heart can reject seeds of truth. Hence, even if the Master Gardener reveals truth in the right place and at the right time, we can ignore the truth or consciously reject it. If we are insensitive to the speaking of the Spirit or are failing to walk in the light already provided, the seeds of truth may lie dormant--never to spring into life. Only when we nourish the truth that we've been given will that truth grow to produce fruit in our lives.  

Will you accept the seeds planted by the Master Gardener?  

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