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“A lot of you…are waiting for your ship to come in, but you never sent one out.” Rita Davenport

I have been listening to a 12-tape series by this delightfully funny and intelligent woman. She is so right about this.

In life, you pretty much get what you put into it. The Bible puts it another way. It says, “Don’t be deceived: God is not mocked. For whatever a man sows, he will also reap…” Many of us have a lot of high expectations, but we’re not really sowing into the lives of others. I feel that with love, kindness, compassion, finances, etc.–what you give, will come back to you. You plant a seed, you reap a harvest. You cannot reap a harvest, if you don’t plant a seed. If you eat the seed, there will be no crop. But if you sow it, it will come back multiplied.

The Word also says in Galatians 6:9, “He who sows sparingly, will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully, will also reap bountifully.”

If you want to be loved, then sow love everywhere you go. If you need help, give help. And if you are in financial need, give to others. Now that doesn’t make sense, does it? Truth be told, not much in God’s upside-down kingdom does make sense to the natural mind, but sowing and reaping is a law, as dependable as the law of gravity. It is a kingdom principle that cannot fail. The Bible tells us, “Give and it will be given unto you.”

Most of us think, well that can’t possibly be right. Whatever I give away, diminishes me. Nothing could be further from the truth.  Jesus said that what we receive in return, would be abundant and running over.

It works with the good things that we sow in life, and unfortunately, with the bad. But just as there are seasons for a farmer, so are there seasons in our sowing and reaping. Time passes, and we think we’ve gotten away with bad seed that was planted. But sooner or later, according to seedtime and harvest principles, a crop will appear. If we sow hatred and discord, we reap hatred and discord. But if we sow good seed, we will see the results of that also. (The only exception to reaping what we sow, is when God, in His mercy, extends His grace and forgiveness to us, and washes away the bad seed.) This is not something to take for granted, but it is something that God has done for me, when I deserved a much harsher consequence, for the bad seed I planted. Aren’t you glad that His mercies are new every morning?

It is impossible in the natural world to reap a harvest, without sowing a seed. So how can you be waiting for your ship to come in, when you never sent one out? (Same principle.) And remember that in the natural world, everything produces after its own kind. You plant a peach seed, you get a peach. You plant an apple seed, you get an apple. The same is true in the spiritual realm. You have to plant what you want to receive. You can’t plant anger, and get peace. You can’t plant bitterness, and get sweetness. So if you’re not happy with the crop that is coming up in your life, evaluate the seed you are planting, and make some changes for the better.

One of the neatest things is that many seeds continue to produce after the initial crop. So much in the spiritual world is this way. We plant a single seed, but it reproduces over and over again. Many times, someone else will reap the harvest from the seeds we planted. But there will always be a harvest.

Sowing seed involves waiting. A farmer cannot put the seed into the ground this morning, and expect to see a crop by sundown. No, it requires patience, as well as watering and nurturing that seed. It takes time, but it will happen.

In Galatians 6:9, Paul encourages us, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time, we will reap a harvest, if we do not give up.” So many times we plant a seed of love and caring, and when we don’t see the fruit immediately, we become discouraged. I wonder, how many of us have planted the seed, watered it for awhile, and became frustrated when we didn’t see immediate results? We turned and walked away, and just as we did, a seedling appeared. But we didn’t see it, because we had already given up.

When we invest in good things, we will get our money back with interest. But there is always a pause between the sowing of the seed, and the harvest. So don’t get weary, don’t become discouraged, and don’t give up. Endurance is the key to so many things in life. (It’s easy to run the 50 yard dash, but a marathon requires more than a quick start.) It requires endurance.

There’s another interesting side to sowing seed. The seed has to be buried in order for it to produce. So it is with our lives, as well. John 12:24-25 explains, “I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain. He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it…” What a paradox. It’s talking about dying to self, in order to become so much more. We are the seed that must be willing to die to self. When we do, we produce much fruit. So the emphasis here, initially, is on the sowing. We sow ourselves to the point of death. But then look at the results. We reap so much more than we sow. If this were not true, farmers would soon go bankrupt. The price of dying to self (sowing yourself as seed) is great, but the reward is greater!

So, if you’re still looking for your ship to come in, go back and make sure, that you sent one out…

Please see other articles that I have written here:

http://www.associatedcontent.com/user/109497/lonnette_harrell.html

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6 Comments

  1. lonnie, That really struck a cord with me, but doing alot of soul searching myself. I think i have been sowing alot , but i forget to thank him alot for what i get!!!!!!!!!!! Cause you know some days it just feels like you get nothing, you need to be hit in the head & be told to look around. I am definatly working on it. Thanks for all your great writing.Hope your health & goals you are trying to accomplish work out.
    Love & comfort,
    Sandy

  2. Thanks Sandy! You’re so faithful as a reader and friend! How are things going with you? I hope to get an email sent in the next couple of days! I enjoy your emails, and think of you often! Hugs and Lots of Love, Lonnette

  3. As I was reading your article I couldn’t help but think about Solomon, especially as it relates to the quote: “A lot of you…are waiting for your ship to come in, but you never sent one out.” Rita Davenport

    The Bible says in 1 Kings 10:22-23
    For the king had merchant ships at sea with the fleet of Hiram. Once every three years the merchant ships came bringing gold, silver, ivory, apes, and monkeys. So King Solomon surpassed all the kings of the earth in riches and wisdom.

    Solomon set out his ships and every three years his ships came in. Maybe that’s why Solomon surpasses all the kings of the earth in riches and wisdom –

    I think I’ll use this in my sermon Sunday. Thanks

  4. Hi Michael: Thank you so much for your thoughts on this. I need to research about the ships being sent out. I assume that they were sent out loaded with merchandise, and then returned the same way, though I’m not sure of that. That will be interesting to research. Glad you could use this in your sermon, and thanks for stopping by! Lonnette

  5. hi my name is tersia reading your emails really bless me still knew on enternet learning to type message tersia

  6. Great read. Life is paradox


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