Sowing, Growing and Harvest – Why 99% of the Journey is Waiting
I was minding my own business one day when I felt the Lord say “there are three distinct seasons of the seed.” I used to be a farmer, and the Lord often speaks to me about my journey through the analogy of the crop. As passionate revivalists, we value the seeds of the kingdom the Lord has placed within us and we burn to see them come to fulfillment. But we’re not always good at the bit in the middle. The waiting.
The three distinct seasons are these: sowing, growing and harvest. As I began to think about this I realised the sowing is just a click of the fingers. For God to drop a word or a promise into our hearts takes a second, and when the harvest comes, it’s a brief moment in time. But the growing season takes months. So ultimately, 99.9% of the life of the seed is the middle – between the release of the promise and the harvest itself. Even when the harvest does come, the best 15% of the cleanest, highest nutrient-level seed gets re-planted. Because the harvest itself is not the end goal. The reward of the harvest is to continue to grow. So can we develop a value for the growth seasons?
I’m watching my students graduate from Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry. Soon they will be alumni. Their time at school was a sowing season. It’s just a click of the fingers in the grand scheme of their lives. They received words and promises. Their potential was unlocked and dreams birthed. But I hope as they leave they embrace their next season – the 99.9% that is being intimate with the Lord, and growing day by day with Him.
When we reach the harvest, it’s a celebration. But if we live our lives waiting for the harvest we are over emphasising that which is under emphasised in the life cycle of the seed. The harvest is a byproduct of having given yourself to growth. When we recognise this, we learn which parts of the process are our responsibility and which are not. We’re active in the sowing. We’re active in the harvest. But in the growth period, it’s hands off. In fact, to constantly dig up a seed and check it’s growth will do nothing but damage it.
We see an example of interfering with the seed in Exodus 24. Moses has gone up the mountain, and the Israelites don’t know when he will be back. Their task is to wait, but they get frustrated and try to take back control of their future by building a golden calf. In the meantime, Moses is having a 40 day face to face encounter with God. He is in the same delay, but he’s with God in it. And the promised land is the last thing on his mind. Our goal is not just to trust God in the delay. It’s to be caught up with Him in it, in ongoing intimacy.
He will be faithful to bring the seed to harvest. But intimacy in the growing is the 99.9% that really matters.