Go now, write it on a tablet for them, inscribe it on a scroll, that for the days to come it may be an everlasting witness. Isaiah 30:8
Then they said to Jeremiah, "May the LORD be a true and faithful witness against us if we do not act in accordance with everything the LORD your God sends you to tell us. Jeremiah 42:5
I've been involved in a small group from church for almost two years. I began sharing the responsibility of leading the study with our group leader last spring, knowing that she was leaving the group and I would take the reigns with another lady as co-leaders. In August I found out I would be leading solo. Whoa. Leading, coordinating host homes, organizing, solo. Whoa, Lord. I didn't sign up for that. I didn't sign on the dotted line for that. Surely my name was forged. Are You sure, Lord? Do you remember whom You are asking, here? Remember, me little ol' Paula. Did You maybe get my 'file' mixed up with someone else's? I was hoping to be able to sit back and listen without the responsibility of leading and preparing every other week. I was looking forward to the flexibility of not taking my turn on a week I didn't feel well. I wasn't looking for this responsibility and pressure. But, I trust You, Lord. You had to deal this card this way for a reason and I need to play it, for You. I think I need this accountability. I don't need an "escape clause". I need the discipline and to be held responsibility...to be moved out of my comfort zone and for God to transform my discomfort into a passionate desire.
I digress. So, last week at group we started a new study. It was our first meeting in three months since we broke for the summer. It was "my" group...it was God's group placed in "my" hands and "my" care. It was the first of many firsts. We had a small attendance of five and had the flexibility to get off track a little. The author was questioning herself and one of the things she was questioning was when was the last time she had led someone to Christ. In this list of questions she was proposing to herself, she asked if we could relate to any of them. There were about six or so and I could relate to a few of them, including this one. I admitted to the group, and now to the world, that I don't know that I've ever led anyone to Christ. Correct that...I said I've never led anyone in the sinner's prayer or shared the Roman's road. They piped in and said "oh no, you are a witness by how you live." I said, yes, I hope I am but that I feel guilty for never walking that Roman's road with someone and seeing him/her encounter and accept Jesus Christ.
We shared how we can plant many seeds just by our conversations with others and we are not to be the one that does it all: plant it, water it, tend it, and grow it. I confessed guilt over not planting more seeds in a more direct way pointing to God in my conversations. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be My witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." Acts 1:8
There is one lady I had on my mind that evening. Someone I enjoy very much and think of very highly. I expressed how she's been going through some stress at work and I wanted to share my faith in one of those plantings of seeds. Something as simple as praying for her and telling her so. When you sow, you do not plant the body that will be, but just a seed, perhaps of wheat or of something else. 1 Corinthians 15:37
Monday afternoon I emailed her expressing my heart and allowing God to do with my expression whatever He chooses.
"I have been praying for you. I’ve been asking God to cover you with peace and assurance and that you will have whatever you personally need to get through this glowing. I know you have been on edge and nervous about this. I have been praying all your nerves will be settled and you sail through this calm at heart."
On Tuesday afternoon, she said "I printed your email." With the stress, drama, and chaos of the day, I wasn't following what she meant and which email she meant as we exchange them regularly. The light bulb went off and I exclaimed "oh." She said she had it laying on the table with her the whole time. The expression on my face must've been 'deer in the headlights' because I couldn't believe it. I think I said, "really?" She continued to say she glanced at it and read it several times during the situation. She said it was very encouraging and she felt herself calm. It seemed to have meant a lot to her...more than I ever dreamed.
Are you serious? Get out of here? I couldn't have made that kind of impact with that small gesture. I'm still in 'shock' and surprised by it. It was just my heart. I had been praying for her. I did care for her state of mind and the calmness of her heart. Like I said, she is one great person and awesome at what she does.
What if I had not done that? What if I had not sent that email? What if that small act, that small seed didn't come to mind during group? Would it really have made a big difference to not do it? I think so. I may never know what that seed will form. [1 Cor. 15:37 above] But, I do know I followed what I believe to be God's quiet (very quiet) voice and His gentle nudging. I only pray He continues to keep my mind sharp and bright, open to more opportunities for some seed plantin'. Show me Lord where to sow Your seeds. Show me to sow.
Sow your seed in the morning, and at evening let not your hands be idle, for you do not know which will succeed, whether this or that, or whether both will do equally well. Ecclesiastes 11:6.
Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. 2 Corinthians 9:6
Yes, Lord, let us sow generously not for the goal of reaping generously for ourselves but that we would reap generously with eternal matters.
A little yeast works through the whole batch of dough. Galatians 5:9
A little faith. A little seed. A little sowing.
Do you have some seeds that need released? Do you have some sowing that needs to be done?
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Picture is of my gorgeous petunias; one of the few annuals I buy.