Cynthia Occelli said, “For a seed to achieve its greatest expression, it must come completely undone. The shell cracks, its insides come out and everything changes. To someone who doesn’t understand growth, it would look like complete destruction.” But isn’t that the way God works sometimes? He rarely changes us the way we might wish-the neat and easy way. Instead, it often requires our stubborn ways and hard hearts to be tilled by sharp blades, breaking up the hard, crusty soil of our lives removing unwanted weeds and boulders buried deep in the ground so that our seed has the room necessary to finally germinate and sprout new growth through the producing of a root.
Knowing the seed God has planted within us is important not only for proper growth to happen, but for the future harvest we will reap and then replant and reap again as we build a legacy for the generations that follow us. Mark Batterson says in Draw the Circle, “And these good things will pass from generation to generation to generation and become GREAT things. Every prayer we pray, every gift we give, every sacrifice we make, and every step of faith we take is an inheritance left to the next generation. And our prayer lives on, long after we die in their lives.” With the realization that when we commit to plant ourselves in good soil, allowing our hearts to be cultivated so that deep roots can grow, and that our decisions today impact more than just our future, the next step is to focus on knowing what unique calling God has given to us-what kind of seed He has planted within us.
There are a few simple steps you can take today that will help you uncover what your seed or calling is. The most important one is to SEEK HIM. Daily. Consistently. Diligently. Seek Him. Jeremiah 29:13 says, “Then you will seek Me, inquire for and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.” If you want to know God’s plans for your life, then you must seek Him. The second step you can take is to make sure you are planting yourself, where you are now, in good soil. Being planted, allows the necessary preparation and growth to take place for your roots to grow and your calling to be found. Now, I want to emphasize, it requires you to be planted-not just attend church. God often requires us to give what we want to receive first. To be willing to pay for what we pray for.
In 1 Kings 18, we read the story of a three-year drought taking place in Israel. In the third year, God comes to Elijah and tells him to go to King Ahab and his prophets of Baal and tell them to prepare for rain. When Elijah meets with King Ahab, he tells the king that he cannot continue to ignore the commandments of the Lord and follow Baal. Elijah basically tells the king and the 450 prophets of Baal that God is ready for a sudden death match showdown. He asks that all the people with the prophets go up to Mount Carmel where each side will build an altar to their god, sacrifice a bull, but not light the altar. Then, whichever god brings the fire is the one, true god. After an all-day process of the prophets of Baal trying to get their god to light their BBQ, Elijah says..my turn. He collects the wood while the people watch and repairs the altar while the people watch. He kills and prepares the bull while the people continue to only watch. He digs the trench around the altar, again, while the people just watch. He picks up the 12 stones and places them around the altar while the people sit idly by as spectators. Finally, Elijah requires the people to stop being spectators and start being participants. To be willing to PAY for what they had been PRAYING for. Remember, they’re living in the middle of a 3-year drought so water is in very short supply. They’ve walked a good way away from their homes up to Mount Carmel so they only have a limited access to water to begin with. Elijah comes to them towards the end of a very long day and says, “Fill four jars with water and pour it on the burnt offering and the wood.” Basically, he’s asking them to take the VERY thing that they’re praying for and to pay it forward. After the people go from person to person and collect enough to fill 4 jars, Elijah instructs them to pour it out on the altar-to sacrifice it. After they do so, he tells them to do it again. Find any water left, collect it, and sacrifice it again. Three times they go through this process. God often requires us to stop being spectators and to trust Him by being participants before He’ll open the doors to our miracles and blessings. It wasn’t until AFTER they had sacrificed what was most precious that the fire came, the offering burnt and God brought the rain.
If you’re willing to seek God diligently as you uncover your calling, be prepared for God to ask you to give first what you’re wanting to receive. In doing so, you will learn more about the nature of God and who He has created you to be than you ever thought possible. In the following blog, we’ll conclude how to uncover what kind of seed you are by focusing on identifying our natural strengths and abilities.