Leadership: The Parable of the Sower, with a Few Side Rows

Today, I have been contemplating the Parable of the Sower in Luke 8:4-15. Jesus explained to His disciples how the parable applied to His calling of communicating the Word of God to the world. It still does. I am amazed, though, at the breadth of the applicability of scripture. One can reap great benefit in thinking through this passage while keeping in mind the personal calling that God has placed in his life: Spreading the Gospel message explicitly, making disciples, building a business, training a child, teaching a student, changing a heart, leading an organization. Whatever your call, there is some help here.

Who is a sower?
One who plants.
Why does he plant?
To produce a crop (increase or return).
Why does he want an increase?
His future depends upon it.
What kind of crop?
Depends on the seed.

The seed is the Word of God (verse 11) ā€“ there is a sense in which everything we see is the embodiment of the creative Word of God ā€“ the Gospel message, certainly, but also all our talents, abilities, and resources as applied to the specific call God has placed on each of our lives. (Matt 25:14-30)

How much of a crop?
Depends on the soil, among other things.
Where does the sower find good soil?
Where it has been prepared.
Why does the soil need to be prepared?
It has been cursed. (Genesis 3:17-19,23)
Does some soil lend itself to preparation better than other soil?
Of course. Some is along the beaten path, some soil is rocky, some is weedy.
Choose wisely, the season for preparation is short.
If one sows along the path (where everyone goes) the seed gets trampled.
Is trampling malicious?
At it’s Satanic foundation, it is. But, with men, participation is mostly mindless.
Jesus equated sowing along the path to getting out the message. There is a place for it.
Fundamentally, growth needs room.
The seed for sowing looks identical to that which is desired at the harvest.
If the seed is consumed for short term needs, it does not remain to produce a yield for the long term.
If the soil is rocky, more work is required for preparation.
The only viable preparation for rocky soil is removing the rocks.
Growth needs ample light, but not a withering intensity of it. Sunlight naturally provides periodic rest.
Growth needs refreshing (moisture, in the parable).
Weeds steal nutrients and space needed by the crop. All the available resources need to go to the crop to produce the best yield (Lack of focus is a thieving weed!).
Weeds produce their own seeds, contaminating future plantings.
Growth takes time.
Planting is not a one-time exercise. Timing is important. (Genesis 8:22, Ecclesiastes 3:1)

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