There are a plethora of scriptures using analogies to describe sowing and reaping or planting and harvesting. Just as God created the earth to yield fruit that was once seed form and placed into the earth, He created almost everything else to act in the same way. This is to say: you get out what you put in. Perhaps the product is multiples more than you sowed. Take actual fruit for instance. You may plant one apple seed, but the tree from one seed has several more apples on it than just the one seed you put in the ground. And, each apple has many seeds of its own. You see, no matter what you put in or where you put it in, there will be an eventual outcome. Although I used the apples example, there are so many things that can be sown. For instance, I like to sow positive thinking and holiness into my children. The bible says in Proverbs 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” To me, this means that whatever I sow into my daughters as children, they will exhibit it as women. Additionally, they may be wives, cooks, evangelists, or whatever is the will of God for their lives. It is my duty to give them the basis for whatever God has for them and ensure they are ready and willing to accept what God allows. Nevertheless, my children are a portion of the ground God gave me to attend, and I must shepherd them accordingly.
God also provides seed in the form of financing and salvation. 2 Corinthians 9:10 declares, “Now he that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness;)”. This scripture explains how the Lord provides for us in food and in fruits of the spirit. And, the more of what God give you that you sow into areas that are fertile, you receive more of what you have given. For instance, patience is a fruit of the spirit. When God allows you to exhibit your patience, in circumstances where you would ordinarily be impatient, He increases your patience. Similarly, when you give to ministries of any kind that have spiritual authority in an area, you may increase in the area ofyour life that you gave towards. My favorite biblical story characterizing this phenomenon is from 1 Kings 17:9-16. In this passage of scripture, the prophet Elijah is ordered by God to go to live with a widow for the duration of a drought. Prior to this command, Elijah was living at a brook called Cherith (see 1 Kings 17:3-7) where the Lord had been sustaining him through the drought. Once Elijah got to the widow’s house she was just about out of her supply of food, I paraphrase. However, Elijah says to her, “Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son” (1 Kings 17:13). Looking at his instructions, it wouldn’t make sense for anyone who has their last for only their family during a drought to make food for a stranger first and to take care of his needs. However, her obedience made provision for her throughout the duration of the drought. This example is relevant to our topic sowing and reaping because the ground in which the widow sowed her last meal into was fertile. Remember, earlier in the 17th chapter of 1stKings God was providing for Elijah by the brook and by the raven. Because the widow then sowed into Elijah’s life, she was then privy to the resources the Lord gave him also. When we give, we should do so as liberally as we can if we intend to receive liberally. According to 2 Corinthians 9:6, “But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.”
We can sow into individuals and into ministries, and people can sow into us. I used to receive gifts of any kind from anywhere until I really learned the concept of sowing and reaping. What kind of seeds are being sown into your life? Does the individual who is sowing into your life have yielding ability? Galatians 6:7-9 declares, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” I was bound in fornication for many years not really knowing how to stop or that I could stop. Consequently, I had a child that I had a really difficult time supporting. And, I received exceptional grades in high school, yet I attended an average college. I did not go as far as I probably could have because I needed to stay close to where I could receive help if I needed it. Not that any of those things were unbearable. I mention them because they were simply the harvest I reaped because of what I sowed. Sowing and reaping are another way to say action and reaction or action and consequences. Galatians 5 gives examples of what fruit is borne out of a life in Christ and what behaviors are reaped in a life walking your own way. “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law” (Galatians 5:19-23). The latter group is what we should all be desiring to grow. Thus, we must work the ground of our lives to ensure we are cultivating righteousness and holiness rather than chaos.