It was the strangest thing I ever saw.
I didn’t usually wander by there but this day I decided to take a different way and there he was in his garden next to the road. I wanted to be friendly so I stopped to talk with him.
“What ‘cha plantin’?” I asked, neighborly-like even though it was obvious to every crow in three counties that the feller was dropping big yellow, grains of corn in the newly-ploughed earth.
“Well, I’m planting peas on this row.”
“Peas! That’s the yellowest peas I ever saw.”
“Well, I know it’s corn, but I hate corn, so I’m planting it as peas and that’s what’ll grow.”
Being an industrious sort, I decided to sit myself down under a shade tree next to his garden and watch. Well, I’ll tell you. He planted two rows of that corn then he woke me up, banging on a stake at the beginnin’ of the third row. “What ‘cha doing now?”
“I’m just marking the new row so I’ll know what I planted.” Then he continued planting … corn!
“So what you planting now?” I inquired.
“Tomatoes! I … oh, I know. You’re planting corn but tomatoes are going to grow?”
Well, I rested myself ‘til he was nearly finished plantin’—beans, peas, potatoes. He even said he was planting apples one time. I don’t know. It all looked like corn to me but he assured me that corn wouldn’t grow up there. He hated corn.
Now here comes the funny part. I wandered past there a few months later just to see if maybe he really did grow some beans and peas. I found him standing in front of one of the most beautiful corn patches you ever saw.
He was crying.
“I hate corn!” he said when he saw me.
“I kinda figured that you might have a little corn when I saw you plantin’ all that. I’m sorry to say it buddy, but didn’t you know that when you plant corn you only get corn?”
“Yeah, I knew it,” he replied. “I just couldn’t help myself. It just seemed like I had to plant corn but I had convinced myself something else would grow. Guess I was wrong, huh?”
I know a lot of folks like that. They’re plantin’ laziness and wishing for a great crop of what hard work will do. Others are plantin’ bitterness and thinkin’ they’re going to reap joy. I dunno but I ‘spect they’re gonna have a lot of bitterweeds springing up.
I’ve seen people holler and scream at their kids and husbands or wives all the time and they’re mad cause they don’t have one of them sweet families like you used to see on TV. Plantin’ corn and wantin’ peanuts, I’d say.
Remember my old grandma, though. That old lady was the sweetest thing you ever saw and she just planted a crop of lovin’ God and lovin’ all the folks around her. She’s with the Lord now but every time I think about her, I feel good. Pretty good crop for a little country gal, I’d say.
I could go on but I’m wantin’ a crop of interested readers and I’m about to get boredom so I’d better bring this in for a landin’. Just let me tell you one thing God’s Word says about this crop thing.
“Don’t be misled: No one makes a fool of God. What a person plants, he will harvest. The person who plants selfishness, ignoring the needs of others—ignoring God!—harvests a crop of weeds. All he’ll have to show for his life is weeds! But the one who plants in response to God, letting God’s Spirit do the growth work in him, harvests a crop of real life, eternal life.” (Gal. 6:7, 8, The Message)
Hey, stop a minute and think friend. What are you plantin’? Heard a preacher once who had just run off a boy comin’ to see his daughter. “Boy, her mama and I have a pretty good idea of what we’re looking for in a son-in-law and you ain’t even close.” You don’t get a racehorse from a mule was what he had to say about it.
I expect a lot of our father-in-law thought we looked like a mule before we married their daughter, but that’s another sermon.
Hey friend. You better stop and look what you’re plantin’. If it’s not what you want STOP! “I’m waiting for God to give me the strength.”
God has already given you the strength. He’s waiting for you to use it.
The folks who are plantin’ right will probably read this and say, “I need to do better.”
The people what are just plantin’ corn will read this and say, “I need to do better,” but they’ll keep on planting corn.
But maybe someone will quit planting corn and really and truly start planting good things in his garden. Just maybe.
If you aspire to fly with the eagles, you have a chance to soar really high. Even if you’re just an average eagle the others will challenge you. If you flop around with the chickens, you’re going to eat a lot of worms and grasshoppers.