“But these are the ones sown on good ground, those who hear the word, accept it, and bear fruit: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred.” Mark 4:20
There are those people that come into our lives that are a reminder that God’s word still finds good ground. Damen and Jessica are those people.
Six years ago our family was traveling and living all over California for my husband’s work. It was a new adventure and so exciting with the opportunities of living and exploring new places, but we always knew our biggest goal was to sow more seeds of the word. We were mature enough to understand that many of the seeds we sowed would not yield much of anything as we had previously learned that we are continually dealing with different terraines of the heart. However, we greatly desired to find that good ground to see the fruits of our labor and enhance our confidence. How encouraging it was when we did!
We formed a special bond with Damen and Jessica early on in our travels which led to spending our Thanksgivings together each year in California. And of course, this led to seeds being sown along the way. After three years of work in California, my husband, Luke, decided it was time to leave, but we remained in contact with them and eventually Luke shared a book called Muscle and a Shovel by Michael Shank with Damen. This book is an upfront, raw depiction of one man’s journey to find the truth which is filled with scripture references and is very similar to my own husband’s conversion. Both Damen and Jessica read it, and we received an unexpected yet not too surprising phone call one Sunday evening. The seeds sown and watered were now bringing forth their fruit from the good ground. Damen and Jessica were convicted of the truth and ready to obey the gospel.
With joy we contacted some of our brethren that lived nearby them, and they were baptized into Christ for the remission of their sins. Not only was their initial conversion a testimony of good ground, but so is their ongoing faithfulness of living out their confession and repentence by bearing fruit in the seeds they are currently sowing themselves.
Unfortunately, our families now live 2400 miles away so we haven’t been able to spend every Thanksgiving together since leaving California, but we are blessed to be together this year. There will be places to explore, food to prepare, and children to tend yet every moment will be cultivated with spiritual conversations of hearts wanting to grow in the grace and knowledge of our God and a deep desire to proclaim His word to others. How delightful to share in the fellowship of the truth of God’s word with our dear friends, Damen and Jessica. They remind us that our labor in sowing God’s word is fruitful and their diligent devotion gives us confidence to continue sowing. This is the joy of finding good ground and why I am so thankful for it.
Reference Mark 4:1-20
Your word is the seed to salvation, my great God, and I am so blessed to plant and water them among those created in Your image. How I desire that every seed sown would fall amongst good ground, but Jesus’ parables and experience has taught me that not everyone will hear the word, accept it, and bear fruit as some seeds will fall by the wayside, on stony ground, or among thorns. Even with this understanding, I know that my labor in sowing seeds of Your word is never in vain and that I must continue to sow to find that good ground. Thank you for the tremendous joy that I experience when that good ground is found. Thank you for the encouragement of these faithful hearts when I see them bearing fruit. Thank you for these successes that help remind me to have confidence in the power of the truth of the gospel. Father, I want to be a more effective sower. Teach me to grow in these efforts daily and give me more opportunities to sow while I look to Christ’s example as the original sower of the good news that takes root and bears eternal fruit for the hearts that possess good ground. Amen.
Truth in love,