There is a ruggedized form of ministry that closely follows in the footsteps of Jesus. It operates in a way that is both informed by, and stems from, the Parable of the Sower. It serves to soften any compacted soil and it labors to break-up any rocky soil that might prevent seedlings from gaining a foothold. It engages in this necessary soil conditioning so that each individual seed, packed with all the potential God saw fit to include, can be planted at the proper depth and at the proper time. Let’s revisit this particular teaching, how the lessons gracefully transcend time, and how they inform our respective ministries going forward. Jesus put it this way:
“A sower went forth to sow. As he sowed, some seed fell by the wayside to be trampled underfoot and consumed by birds. Other seed fell upon the rocky places where there was little soil. It sprang up quickly because there was no depth to the soil. As soon as it was warmed by the sun, it withered because it had no root as a means to secure moisture. Other seed fell among the thorns, and as the thorns grew up, it was choked so that it yielded no grain. Still other seed fell upon good ground and, while growing, yielded, some thirtyfold, some sixtyfold, and some a hundredfold. The kingdom of heaven is also like a man who cast good seed upon the earth; and while he slept by night and went about his business during the day, the seed sprang up and grew. Although the Sower didn’t know just how it came about, the plant came to fruit. First there was the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. And then when the grain was ripe, he put forth the sickle, and the harvest was finished.” — The Parable of the Sower as Told by Jesus.