Seed Planting

June 28, 2020
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1 Corinthians 3:7 – It's not important who does the planting, or who does the watering. What's important is that God makes the seed grow. (NLT)

One of the most important and helpful pieces of advice that I have received is "Learn your coffee barista's name — and use it!" Let me explain.

I'm not a coffee addict, but I am a latte lover! Now that our local coffee shops are gradually starting to reopen, I find it once again very relaxing to sit and read a book as I enjoy my latte. I often combine this enjoyable ritual with a neighbourhood walk or a few errands before continuing on with the rest of my day.

In the past, I've found that one result of frequent visits to the same coffee shop is growing familiarity with the baristas. Baristas are often young, and the turnover rate can be high, but after a few weeks, they often begin to recognize me. They then also remember that I love a half-sweet cardamom latte with a scone. They may ask my name, and I ask theirs in return.

Then comes the payoff. Along with a greeting and a smile, I can also gradually begin to "say a little word for Jesus", as I've heard it expressed. (This need not — and should not — be a sermon, a theological debate, or even a long testimonial.) Melissa had been a social worker in Madagascar, so when I told her that my husband and I had served as missionaries there, I was also able to tell her a little of why we had gone there. Ashley is also a reader and often asks about the book under my arm. If it's a book with a spiritual topic, I can say a word or two about how such books help me to grow in my Christian life. I could tell Josh, a student at a local college, that I would be praying for him as he faced his finals. I can encourage Loretta, the hard-working owner of her coffee shop, by applauding the enhancements that I see her gradually making to her shop.

My purpose in developing these casual relationships with baristas (or my mail carrier, my car mechanic, my neighbour, etc.) is simply to plant a seed. I may not develop a deep or long-lasting relationship with many of these people, but my intersection with their lives can still have a lasting effect. The small seed that I drop into the soil of their heart may be watered later on by someone else who comes into their life. Perhaps they have a praying grandmother, a kind neighbour, or a godly co-worker who will help further their interest in God and His ways.

Ultimately, of course, it is God who makes the seed grow, but He will honour our seed-planting efforts.

Prayer: Dear Father in heaven, thank You for the people with whom we cross paths every day. May our words of wisdom and grace bear fruit as we show Your love through our daily words and actions. Amen.


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About the author:

Gail Lundquist <gail10833@gmail.com>
Portland, Oregon, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    A great challenge, Gail.


    Good idea, Gail. Thanks.


    What a beautiful devotional. Thank you.


    Thank you, Gail. Your words are well taken.


    Great reminder, thank you and blessings Gail!


    Yes Gail! Every word said is a seed sown.
    Blessings on your work and ministry!


    Thank you, Gail, for this encouraging word. May we all become discerning seed planters. Blessings.


    That is one of the sweetest, gentlest descriptions of evangelism that I have heard in a long time. Thank you for sharing. Blessings on your day.


    Gail,
    I’ve never heard it put this way, but it’s a great explanation, and I see myself doing the same.
    All for the Glory of God.


    Thank you. I love an iced coffee on a hot day! I will keep seed planting. Very hot here today! Praise God. Time to water the vegetable garden.
    (Manitoba)


    Dear Cassandra,
    Thanks for your encouraging words. May we all look for opportunities to plant seeds of kindness and grace in hearts around us. Your word “discerning” is good to keep in mind!


    I do the same at supermarket checkouts.
    Not so open to follow-up, but at least it usually elicits a smile.
    Thanks for your DDs, Gail, always thoughtful.
    (BC Canada)


    Dear Gail,
    What a beautiful inspiring and encouraging email for us to learn from and use in our own lives. At first, I wondered where you were going with this and then I really understood your advice and wisdom. Let us all plant a seed for God to make it grown. Thank you for sharing.


    Hello Gail,
    Thanks for this devotional. Good advice about “planting a seed.” One never really realizes how one good word here and there can result in a whole compilation of great happenings. The Lord works wonderful miracles.
    Blessings,
    (B.C.)


    Dear Gail,
    I am so happy you are doing this. I loved doing the same thing when I was able to get out. Hopefully, someday, I will be able to do it again. Of course, by “it”, I mean getting to know peoples’ names and always asking God to bless them. I know a young woman who has an autoimmune disease and I often think of her and pray she safe and healthy.
    Have a wonderful day Gail and God bless you.


    O YES, Gail! Well-described and dealt out to us! So glad I am here on the receiving end to hear your words. For me, too, this is life as she was meant to be lived, these daily reminders of the spiritual world around us, in us and through us. This is why, I am sure, we are in the world and how we are enabled to partake of the joy as we go about the small things of our day (which are the GREAT things of our lives, seed by seed.!) Yay for your testimony and God’s grace rolled into a gracious ball of faith and rolled from us to the place God has carefully placed us today. Yay again!


    Hi, I really loved your devotional. It was so interesting how awesome you are in planting little seeds during your day. It inspires me to look for opportunities to do the same with my family and those around me.
    Thanks for all your work in doing devotionals, I so enjoy them.
    (Ontario, Canada.)


    I totally believe in this.
    I make a point of knowing people’s names and use them.
    This sends the message: I am interested in you. And yes conversations can take place.
    If I appreciate what a person does for me, I try to let their superior know. Everybody needs a boost especially now.
    Thanks for sharing.


    Dear Gail,
    Thank you for the devotional that comes to me where I am, so I pray with you to say encouraging gospel words to many persons — words that will lead our acquaintances, and even people we meet for brief times, to know our Lord and to continue to get to know him better as Lord and Savior and Friend.

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