Yesterday I rented a tiller. My wife and I are owners of a small homestead of about .33 acres. On said homestead we harvest goodtimes, smiles, friendships, and every summer garden tomatoes. So, I rented a tiller to break the ground and do some planting. My neighbors also asked me if I could do some tilling in their yard to level out a hump. I said, yes. I said I would do the work for multiple reasons.
1. Because of Jesus in my place.
2. They are elderly.
3. The man is a retired, disabled American veteran. Therefore, I should be asking them if there’s anything I can do.
After I tilled my garden, I walked the tiller over.
About half way through tilling the hump in their lawn I grew tired. Exhausted. Physically, I was tired. I was tired of all my fat jiggling around for the world to see. Tired of the hard ground. I was tired of working for cheap or free all of the time. Tired of saying yes to everything. Then, all these thoughts about ME came into my mind.
What about MY time? MY money? MY energy? MY house?
Then suddenly Jesus put a verse into my cold, hardened, locked heart:
…For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor. For each will have to bear his own load. Let the one who is taught the word share all good things with the one who teaches. Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.
When it comes down to it, it’s not my time, my money, my energy, my house. Jesus has gifted me all of these things. Because of that I want to make a difference for the Gospel. Jesus did not leave his Kingdom, come to this place, die on a cross for my sins so that I could build my own kingdom. Jesus gave everything therefore, so should we…even our mad-crazy tilling skills.
Through the Gospel I start to find strength to keep going. Through the Gospel I start to find hope. Hope that Jesus will continue to do a good work and more people will come to him. And I find my purpose. God has preordained good works for me to do. Even tilling.
There’s a reason a farmer plows the ground before planting seeds. So that the seeds grow roots that will easily soak up moisture and nutrients from the ground. Gospel roots are the same way. God will often break the ground of our hearts so that the Gospel can take root.