There is an art to farming. Every crop has a place and a time to be planted. Soil has to be turned and prepared. Fields have to be plowed and worked. Even after the soil is ready, you have to be careful. Plant to early, and your crop falls victim to frost. Plant to late and roots aren’t deep enough to withstand the summer sun. Yes, there is an art to planting, and there is a time to plant.
If you are a believer in Christ today, it isn’t an accident. We live in a world where serendipity often gets the credit for an act of the Holy Spirit. Someone, whether it was a pastor, a friend, or a complete stranger, was obedient in presenting the gospel to your unbelieving heart. They looked for thorns and help you dig out painful shrubs of doubt before they told you of Christ. They were faithful and God, knowing that you had been worked into good soil, knew that it was time to plant.
It isn’t enough though to simply believe and not do some planting of our own. Each of us, if we are honest with ourselves, knows someone who doesn’t know the Lord Jesus Christ as their savior. It is impossible to know whether or not the time has come to plant if we don’t spend some time working the soil. Work takes a relationship, and sometimes that relationship is hard. The burden seems too heavy. Some lives are riddled with thorns, and when we go after them we are the ones whose hands get bloody. We might fear that working the soil of a dry heart will leave us tired, and hurting. In that case we should take comfort yet again in Christ. It was Christ who carried the cross of our burden. It was Christ who bore thorns from sins He didn’t own. It was Christ who bloodied His hands so that we might live. It is from Him that we draw not only the strength, but the wisdom, to know when its time to plant.