When you think of sowing and reaping what comes to your mind? Is it a farmer who has to plant his field in hopes that the weather will cooperate enough that he will get a harvest at the end of the season? Is it a principle that speaks to needing to plant in order to harvest? Is it a principle that speaks to if you don’t plant something how can you expect to get anything back in return? Is it a principle that if you plant good habits it will have a good return and if you plant bad habits you will get a bad return? Are you ready to plant in order to get a greater return? How are you sowing your talents? How are you sowing your behavior and attitude? How are you sowing your life? How will things go when you see Jesus face to face? (‘For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. ‘ II Corinthians 5:10)
As we consider these, let’s reflect on a few scriptures:
Let’s consider how we will use the talents we have been given:
‘“For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them. And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey. Then he who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and made another five talents. And likewise he who had received two gained two more also. But he who had received one went and dug in the ground, and hid his lord’s money. After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them. “So he who had received five talents came and brought five other talents, saying, ‘Lord, you delivered to me five talents; look, I have gained five more talents besides them.’ His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ He also who had received two talents came and said, ‘Lord, you delivered to me two talents; look, I have gained two more talents besides them.’ His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’ “Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.’ “But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest. Therefore take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents. ‘For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’’Matthew 25:14-30
Let’s consider what happens when we sow and the outcome:
‘On the same day Jesus went out of the house and sat by the sea. And great multitudes were gathered together to Him, so that He got into a boat and sat; and the whole multitude stood on the shore. Then He spoke many things to them in parables, saying: “Behold, a sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds came and devoured them. Some fell on stony places, where they did not have much earth; and they immediately sprang up because they had no depth of earth. But when the sun was up they were scorched, and because they had no root they withered away. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up and choked them. But others fell on good ground and yielded a crop: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. He who has ears to hear, let him hear!”
“Therefore hear the parable of the sower: When anyone hears the word of the kingdom, and does not understand it, then the wicked one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is he who received seed by the wayside. But he who received the seed on stony places, this is he who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy; yet he has no root in himself, but endures only for a while. For when tribulation or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he stumbles. Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful. But he who received seed on the good ground is he who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces: some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.”’Matthew 13:1-9,18-23
Even in the Old Testament we get insights:
‘“They sow the wind, And reap the whirlwind. The stalk has no bud; It shall never produce meal. If it should produce, Aliens would swallow it up.’Hosea 8:7
‘He who sows iniquity will reap sorrow, And the rod of his anger will fail.’Proverbs 22:8
‘You have plowed wickedness; You have reaped iniquity. You have eaten the fruit of lies, Because you trusted in your own way, In the multitude of your mighty men.’Hosea 10:13
So let’s consider how we are living and the impact of our decisions.
‘Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. ‘Galatians 6:7
‘But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. ‘II Corinthians 9:6
So how are you sowing as part of your life? What does it say or point to when it comes what you will get to reap from it? Will you consider adjusting your life’s direction and how you are sowing? Will you consider adjusting your life in order to make sure to sow in the right people and places? Will you consider adjusting your life in a way that you are being generous in order to make sure that there is a bountiful harvest? The decision is yours!
The Law of Reciprocity
MEMORY VERSE OF THE DAY:
‘The generous soul will be made rich, And he who waters will also be watered himself.’Proverbs 11:25
POINTS FROM THE DEVOTIONAL:
- Do you realize that sowing and reaping are predictable?
- Do you realize that the laws of nature are predictable?
- Do you realize that the law of reciprocity is predictable throughout your life?
- Ever noticed or recognized how you get back what you give out?
- What type of a giver are you?
- Ever read the book of Proverbs to catch the examples of the law of reciprocity in action?
- If you give anger then you can expect an angry reply.
- If you give kindness then you can expect a kind reply.
- If you are a good steward of your resources then we find a good return on our investments.
- Do you realize the benefits of generosity?
- Do you realize how it is better to give than receive and yet by giving you receive?
- Today’s verse gives us two ways to look at the same principle from Solomon:
- Let’s guard against selfishness!
- Let’s take hold of how the generous will be made rich. If we can be a conduit for God then He will continue to push things through us.
- Let’s be generous in our hearts! Let’s be caring people! Let’s be looking to find eternity with God for ourselves as well as others!
- Let’s love as God loves!
- Will you allow God to pour into your life so that you can pour out into the lives of others?
- Will you be so filled with thankfulness that you give it away?
- We need to be giving out of a willing heart rather than compulsion.
- We need to be giving out of the overflow of our heart not because we are looking for nor expecting a return!
- Let’s be giving and generous in order to make a difference.
- By only focusing on the giving we don’t get stuck wondering when the return will come or why it is taking so long!
- By only focusing on doing what God has asked of us we won’t get upset in times of blessings and times of adversity.
- The law of reciprocity has the purpose of blessing us by changing the way we think and what we have in our hearts!
DISCUSSION TOPICS FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:
- Why is it important for our hearts to be right when we give generously?
- How is the law of reciprocity working out for you? Any changes needed?
QUOTE(S) FROM TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL:
Today’s reading from Tanakh:
So where are you at today? What does sowing and reaping look like to you? What does generosity look like to you? What does giving look like to you? How are you choosing to use your talents and gifts? How are you choosing to use your resources? Make sure to remember to sow the seeds and to eat the bread that God gives you. Are you ready to decide? Are you ready to choose? Let’s pray:
Did you pray with me?
Would you be willing to leave me a comment so that I can pray with and for you about such an incredible decision?
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