This morning I read a verse that made me think a bit.
“Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.” – 2 Corinthians 9:6
Paul is writing about giving, and the importance of generosity. He is encouraging his readers to give generously of what they have.
Although the giving aspect of this is definitely the point of focus, there is a very valuable and somewhat generic truth wrapped up in there as well.
It’s a simple truth that I often like to forget about. (Because forgetting is the opposite of remembering, by not remembering I am forgetting.
I like to forget it because I’m lazy.
Or sometimes I feel like I don’t have anything to offer.
Or I don’t want to feel obligated.
Or any one of a myriad of other excuses.
What is that thing, that simple truth?
There is a direct correlation between the investment (sowing the seed) and the outcome (reaping a harvest).
The thing about this truth is that it applies to so many important aspects of life. As well as a lot of less important aspects of life.
Someone trying to become a better photographer will find a direct relationship between the amount of time they spend taking pictures, reading about taking pictures, listening to people talk about taking pictures, investing in the ground work of knowing how to take better pictures, and the quality of their photography.
Someone trying to become a better friend will also find a relationship between how much time and energy they spend on a particular relationship and how that relationship grows. If you know a dating couple you know how this works.
Someone who would like to retire one day and have a retirement account ready and waiting for them… needs to start putting money away in their 20’s and 30’s. If you don’t put any money away you can’t expect there to be any waiting for you.
Someone who wants to be a writer (a practice which is incredibly difficult to find a complete definition for these days) will have to write a certain amount of words each day for a lot of days to get the number of words necessary for a novel.
Someone who wants to be generous will need to find a way to give. Whether small gifts or larger gifts it is incredibly easy to be stingy with time and resources – but if you desire to be a generous person you’ll have to give generously sooner or later.
You get the idea.
It’s the basic principle of sowing and reaping.
A farmer doesn’t expect to be able to harvest strawberries if he doesn’t first prepare the ground, create the hills, lay the plastic, plant the strawberries and then protect and feed the plants through the winter.
So what is it you need to be sowing on today or this weekend? You don’t have to say it out loud… but please do us all (and yourself) a favor and ask yourself the question.
And then start sowing.
P.S. Please note that I write this from the point of view of realizing there are many areas I need to do a better job of sowing in. I have so much to learn about this myself it is somewhat dizzying when I stop and think about it.