The Winter Wheat and an Upside Down Kingdom
Spring is here and life is bursting forth all around us. It is an amazing time to be outside engaged in the work of caring for our community, and I find there is always a renewed enthusiasm at The Farm as we plant our first crops of the season.
However, it is easy to miss the work that took place over the winter to ensure that the spring planting is possible. Over the winter, we planted wheat to serve as a cover crop for the soil. These crops serve to manage soil fertility, water, weeds, pests, diseases, and all kinds of other things while we prepare for spring.
Then when spring comes these cover crops are plowed under before reaching full maturity in order to complete their work of providing nutrients for the soil.
The fruit they are capable of producing does not become the end of the story; it becomes the beginning of another one.
It becomes the source of life for other plants as they use the wheat’s potential to produce a richer harvest.
As believers and members of faith communities, we often view the fruit that we are capable of producing as the main point of the story.
However, can we pause for a moment to consider a larger view of God’s restoration story that is taking place in the world?
Could our entire life’s labor be spent for the sole purpose of being a source of life for others?
Can we live out the small and humble work of the gospel every day and be okay to let our contribution never be fully known?
Are we willing to walk through the winters of life to ensure that those who come after us have a rich soil from which to build?
Can we commit our lives to prepare others to cross over into God’s promise for their lives?
Can we find hope in a life that feels as if it may never bear the fruit we desire?
…and in the winter wheat can we see the kingdom as God does?
Seeing the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and when he sat down, his disciples came to him.
And he opened his mouth and taught them, saying:
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
“Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.