Luke 13:18- He said therefore, “What is the kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it? It is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his garden, and it grew and became a tree, and the birds of the air made nests in its branches.”
A mustard seed.
It’s the smallest of all seeds, yet grows to be the largest of all garden plants. It has several uses across the planet that stretch from spices used in cooking to oils used in body massages. And, the fact that fascinates me most is that it germinates best when placed in a cold atmosphere and relatively moist soil.
I love that because the mustard seed is referenced to on multiple occasions throughout Scripture, and therefore I look at everything about the little guys through a different viewpoint. So, when I read that mustard seeds grow best in colder temperatures, my heart felt a quiver of hope. Why?
Because the world in which we live is a cold one. People are cruel. Times are hard. Money is short. Bills are unending. Fear is celebrated. Christianity is mocked. It’s not uncommon for us to feel defeated, hindered, and/or ineffective. When your desire is to see peace and joy in the eyes of those around you, and your heart longs for hurting souls to find rest and solace in Jesus Christ, when we focus on the coldness that surrounds, we’ll forever feel like it’s impossible. (Matthew 19:26- But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”)
We just need mustard-seed-size faith! Just a tiny little fragment that we can plant somewhere in this bitter world. That’s all it takes. (Matthew 17:20- “…Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”) It will take a little time to germinate underneath the soil that will remain unseen by us. But, one day soon after we’ll see a little sprout coming up from the surface, which will continue to grow into something vast; Proof that even in the coldest of atmospheres, fresh beginnings can indeed come to life.
The Kingdom of God cannot be defeated or stumped. God can take the tiniest amount of faith, the smallest act of obedience, and the most miniscule effort and form it into something vastly beautiful. It reminds me of a song I learned in Sunday School years ago,
“In the harvest field now ripened, there’s a work for all to do; Hark the voice of God is calling, to the harvest calling you. Little is much when God’s in it. Labor not for wealth or fame; There’s a crown, and you can win it! If you go in Jesus’ name.”
With all the pressures of life, we sometimes deceive ourselves into believing that there is just as much stress to be felt when living for and serving God. We have to let it sink in real deep that He is the one that does all the work. We just have to be obedient, do our small task, (plant the seed), and watch Him bring it to fruition.
So, don’t be discouraged when you look around and see the condition of the world we’re living in. Instead, thank God that He can make our little mustard seeds grow right in the midst of it. Check your faith today. Surely you have a tiny bit, right? Well, that’s all it takes! God can and will use that!
Prayer: Lord, I love You and thank You today for taking my smallest efforts and making something big and beautiful with them. I pray that You continue to grow the seeds I plant, and the faith with which I plant them. Thank You for Your faithfulness! In Your name, amen.