The word PLANT came to my mind last week as I was considering a possible theme for my life this year. At first I thought it was a little too obvious considering we are about to plant a church, but upon reflecting on my recent years of life, I think this word adequately describes where I am in my life church plant and beyond. The majority of my life I was a doer. Then God brought that idol crashing to the ground. For the past two years I have had to come to peace with the fact that this isn’t one of the primary descriptors of me anymore. There are seasons of suffering and seasons of rest, reflection and recalibration after suffering. That’s a description of my past two years. But now, by God’s grace, it’s time to start doing again. This time I’m starting that process of doing with different motivations and most importantly, very prayerfully, not to make an idol factory out of my effort.
This year I just want to sow to faithfulness, righteousness, good works, mission, love, joy, peace, study of his word and writing. I want to plant seeds of these things and learn to grow in trust that God is working redemption in all of my imperfect effort. I want to discern better when I am to sow and when I am to wait, and to not be overly concerned with others vineyards or their expectations of the seeds I am planting in my own. And I want to grow in cheering on other’s planting to all things good because I am coming to believe with CS Lewis, “The more we thus share the Heavenly Bread between us, the more we shall all have.” My sister or brother in Christ, with that huge beautiful vineyard, well…they are not my enemy. They aren’t even my competition. Jesus multiples loaves in his provision. There is enough of His majesty for all of us.
There are seasons in life of suffering and then we take time to recover and rest. And that is okay. But, I’m discerning for me it’s time that I exit that season. He’s given me a lot of seeds to plant as a result of this recalibration, and I’m so grateful for all the lessons I learned.I know I will continue to learn. And I know I need to exit slowly and plant sparingly. Maybe at the end of this year I’ll find I wasn’t quite ready to plant or maybe all the seeds sown don’t grow. Maybe it all fails. These things are quite possible, but my worst fears aren’t reasons not to sow. God has promised to provide for me, even if all my sowing fails. I can walk forward sowing seeds in faith resting in the promise that HIS effort and plan and promise, not mine, is the final word over my life.
So, cheers to a year of Farmer Mindy and planting! Who knows, maybe I’ll even finally be able to find the perfect pair of overalls I’ve been wanting.