Flowers and Fields

A field of wildflowers will sprinkle their seeds haphazard across a landscape, allowing their offspring to find any ground that it can, good or bad. The seeds of a wildflower will scatter, some landing among rocks and in dry crevices, some among lush, fertile land, and some will die on a bed of sand. They might float into a river and drown, or nestle in a bit of tree bark. They might be eaten by a bird, or trampled on a sidewalk. They might land in a healthy amount of sunlight, or in too much shade. Their chance of finding an ideal location to grow is slim, but wildflowers end up everywhere, in the strangest of places.Most of the seeds of a wildflower are wasted and destroyed. Because of this, most breeds of wildflowers will work hard to produce thousands of seeds, in excess, to make sure they can multiply themselves. Then, once a seed finds the fertile soil and sprouts, they depend on another random pattern of bees and butterflies to pollinate them so they can reproduce again. Many wildflowers will be unsuccessful in their primary mission: to reproduce.

Wildflowers, although beautiful, produce a fleeting beauty. They spend a brief time full of extravagant life, over-producing and attempting to spread their seeds across the entire world. They depend on the elusiveness of the breeze and good luck to grow and produce a harvest. Through this process, they get good results. They can fill up an entire field with bright, happy colors in three days! However, they waste more than they produce, and not every seed bears fruit.

When a farmer intentionally plants a field, however, he must carefully select the location of his field. He weighs the pros and cons, examines the soil, and selects the right seeds. Most farmers will plant something practical. He will plant something that will feed his family, like corn or wheat, not something frivolous like rose bushes. Once the farmer has prepared everything, he will commit fully to this project. He knows that this specific site is where his crops will stay for the foreseeable future. He will begin to till the dirt, prepare the space, and clear out weeds. He will consciously place each seed in a specific space, not too close or far from the next, and in a fertile environment. He will consistently return to his field, day after day, and put in the hard work to water and weed around every seed. He will be patient and committed, checking on his crops every day. Before seeing any fruit, the preparation and the process has already required a great ordeal.

When the time comes for the field to ripen, the farmer has already invested much into his field. His harvest is huge, with more than enough to feed his family for a long time. He will be able to store away some of the crop for the future, and will waste very little compared to the wildflowers.

The wildflowers and the farmer probably had the same amount of work to do. The flowers had to spend a lot of energy over-producing seeds to reproduce, while the farmer had to do a little work every day. The wildflowers, with their randomized, spontaneous method has very little commitment to any specific site or any specific seed, but the farmer places much importance on each individual field and seed. The wildflowers place a little trust in thousands of half-hearted opportunities, while the farmer places all of his trust into the success or failure of a few fields. The harvest of the wildflowers are fleeting, and they must constantly reproduce to stay alive, but the harvest of the farmer’s field lasts for a long time after. And finally, the fruit of the wildflowers are bright, beautiful, and fleeting, but the fruit of the farmer’s labors are nutritious, satisfying, and fulfilling.

God asks us to step out in faith– to plant a field– so that He can make everything grow. Although we could be like wildflowers, spreading randomly and wasting thousands of our precious seeds, God has a greater harvest in store for those who are willing to commit and wait. He honors those who put all their eggs in one basket, and He honors the action of faith. Even if a crop fails, it’s okay. Just because we went through one season of drought, or an intense cold front, that doesn’t mean that we give up. Farmers know that bad seasons come and go, but you have to keep re-planting the seeds and wait for the to grow again. The land that you and God have chosen to sow into is valuable, and it is yours for the long haul. Don’t simply toss your seeds into the wind, or aimlessly pollinate. You should sow, invest, commit, and wait for the harvest. And if the harvest doesn’t come, re-plant and start again.

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