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The Planter

Truly, truly, I say to you,
unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies,
it remains by itself alone;
but if it dies, it bears much fruit.
John 12:24

We have squirrels at our house. I know, I know. They are dangerous to have around; they will build their house in your attic; they will eat through your wiring and start a fire, they will die in the walls and you can’t find them, ad infinitum. But they are here in my yard and I’m not about to deal with the problem as most people suggest at this point in time.

I love to watch them bury their winter food supply. We have three pecan trees in the backyard and they will pick up a nut, scurry all around the yard trying to find the best, safest place to put that nut for hard times, and when they decide on the location, they dig like crazy, put the nut in the hole, spread some dirt over the top, then run rapidly to get another pecan. Of course, they never remember where they planted that pecan, but their effort is fascinating and their expectation amazing!

And the results of their frantic preparation? We have pecan sprouts in the spring like you wouldn’t believe.

It’s so interesting how Jesus would teach something by using stories that we can understand and relate to. It’s standard planting procedure. Buy a package of seed, dig a trench or hole to place the seeds in, water well (with a small can of root stimulator maybe), cover them up, and when they have had enough time in the darkness and dampness, those seed begin to put forth little sprouts. The seed itself dies, but in that death, brings forth life.

Paul gets pretty frustrated trying to explain this to the Corinthians. He says, “You fool! That which you sow does not come to life unless it dies!” So it is with Christ. He was “planted” so to speak, but life came out of His death–HIS life–to be lived through us. Sharon, a dear friend, penned this thought: “While Satan thought that he had killed his rival, he had in actuality only multiplied Christ’s lordship exponentially!” From that one “Seed”, millions have come forth!

Why did that verse grab me? Well, “I have been crucified with Christ” (Galatians 2:20)—I have died—been buried—and now I’m supposed to be “sprouting” new life. I’m supposed to be mentoring others by words, actions, daily living—every facet of my life should be evidence of that death, that resurrection, and the Life that is now mine.

Thank You Lord, for teaching me such “heavy” truth with such simple illustrations. You know, Lord, that’s the mark of a good teacher. It isn’t big words, or important names, or impressing me with conversational skills. The question is, did I understand what You said? Could I apply this to MY life? So, thanks, Lord, for teaching me about how a grain of wheat can be me.

About the Author

Anabel spent decades teaching in many contexts through Lifetime Guarantee Ministries. She has taught countless others how to have a genuine intimate faith and a sound marriage. She shared from her heart about living from the heart. Lifetime’s beloved founder and mentor passed away November 7, 2010. Her legacy and influence are timeless and priceless.