The Seed

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This is a subject close to my heart. The Seed. A few summers ago the Lord showed me the seed. What He showed me was one plant is started from one tiny seed but the fruit from that plant has hundreds if not thousands of seeds.  Why is this important?

From a gardener perspective this is a money saving wonder! How many times do we place an order for seeds and receive a tiny package with somewhere between 30 – 100 seeds. Depending on the type of seed you might get 30 corn but 100 carrot due to the size. Yet one ear of corn can have 100+ seeds on it! A carrot plant can have 1000+. Why do we spend dollar after dollar to buy seed from some other region?

We’re scared. Somewhere along the line someone told us we couldn’t, shouldn’t or we decided we wouldn’t. Saving seed is easier than you might think.

First you must start with a seed that will yield seed after its own kind as Genesis 1:11-12 talks about. In our day this is called “Heirloom”. If you are growing a hybrid the likelihood of the next plant being the same is very slim. A hybrid has a mom and a dad plant that are different types of the same plant and the kid plant is good. However, there after you never know if you’ll get something closer to the dad, mom, or kid plant.  On this note a GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) seed NEVER yields seed after its kind because it doesn’t have a mom and dad of the same genetic makeup. Hence I do not agree with GMO production. However GMO’s haven’t flooded the backyard gardener quite yet.

Second, you must leave room for your plants to continue to grow past its picking stage. In the case of root or herb plants (carrot, lettuce, etc)  this means just leaving one or two in the row to continue to grow into flowering and seed production. For the fruiting plants (tomatoes, cucumbers, etc) you would need to continue to pick the fruit till close to the end of that plants season and then chose the best producing plant to leave a couple of fruits on the plant to over ripen. This insures that the seed is completely developed before you harvest it.

Third you must pick, dry and store the seed in the proper way. To pick seed the most likely place is in the bottom of the flower pod. You can crack open the flower and find tons of seeds. (As pictured above. These are lettuce seeds from a flower pod) Also some plants produce a seed pod on the stem somewhere.  They tend to resemble some sort of “pea pod”. In the case of fruiting plants the seed obviously is in the fruit and so you must extract that seed and dry it. Pumpkins are super easy but tomatoes and cucumbers are a little tricky in that they prefer to be “fermented” first. I know! Your mind is swirling! Mine did too but when I found out that fermenting was as easy as putting the washed seed in a jar of water 3/4 full and leaving it in my window…. I relaxed. The good seed simply sinks to the bottom! Cool huh!

Drying and storing is fairly easy also in that to dry seed you lay clean, towel dried seeds out on a cookie sheet.  Turning them and stirring them frequently to keep them from molding. Once they are dry to the touch and somewhat firm, you can put them in paper lunch bags to store away from light and moisture. If they are a large seed such as squash plants store the paper bag in a dry arid place for a bit to continue to dry the inside before packing away. Do not use plastic bags because if any moisture at all is left in your seed it will humidify the plastic bag and mold your seed.

If you do these things and mess it up don’t worry, we all have. In this day and age you can still buy a new seed packet and start again.  Don’t give up though because the joy of growing little grandbabies in your garden is more than you can imagine. Some of the benefits are stronger, healthier, pest resistant plants that will produce so much more seed than you need and you can share! Sharing seed is a tradition that should never go away because it points us right back to our fellow neighbor in whom we should love like Jesus commanded us!

Which brings me to the next point. The Jesus in the seed. You see the Lord says that one seed (Adam) brought sin into this world because all his plants after him were of the likeness of him as stated in Genesis 5:3 and 1Cor 15:22. If you have a plant that produces cucumbers and you plant that seed, all you’re ever going to get is cucumbers…. right? This is why Jesus had to come and let us be born again of a new seed. His seed. So that when we grow, we produce fruit after His kind. These fruits are called sinless because Jesus did not sin though tempted (as in the wilderness). Each of us are first born of Adam, even a child born of a saved person is still first of Adam. We must all make the choice to change our seed to Jesus individually.

The neat thing about seeds is when you look at how many seeds come from just one plant you start to see the generational promise in Exodus 20:5-6. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; and shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.  When I bust open a seed pod I can see how quickly even one generation lost is so many lost and one generation taught is so many! If I am that plant, and my fruit yields seed…. hundreds and hundreds of seed….. I question quickly what plants my seeds would grow. If seeds saved from plants grown in the same environment year after year produce stronger, healthier, pest resistant plants, what environment should I be growing my children in? The answer is not wealth or ease but an environment that loves Jesus.

Are you still a plant of the seed of Adam? If so, the way to fix it is simple. The Lord says, if you believe in your heart that Jesus Christ is Lord of all and He died for your sins and rose again, all you have to do is confess this belief with your mouth and let the redeemed of the Lord say so! So to that I say… SO!

Amen

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Why be a producer?

20140723_130354As I confessed in my previous blog, I used to think that I was becoming a producer because if I knew where it was grown and how it was grown it would be healthier and my family and I would live a longer, better life.  Surprise, surprise, I was wrong. The Lord says “Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart” Psalms 27:4. The interesting thing about my desire to learn to be a producer was that I was wrong in my motivation.  As soon as I “delighted” myself in the Lord, He promptly showed me why He had placed that desire in my heart.

You see I was explaining to my children why the Lord is about to judge this nation.  First, why does God judge nations real time? Answer: there are no “nations” in heaven to judge, only individuals. Second, why would God judge this nation? Answer: it was founded as “One Nation Under God” which means it was supposed to set a better example and for a long time it did, now it has turned from God and mocks Him openly. Third, what does judgement of a nation look like? Answer: historically speaking, a collapse of economy or invasion and take over by an enemy sometimes both.  Take a look at Ezekiel 35, it is one of many examples of what God does when He judges a nation.  Why does this explanation matter? Answer: this is why we are called to learn to produce something. Not to save ourselves but to save a nation after its collapse.  By save, I truly mean the only “saved” that matters and that’s saved from eternal judgement in Hell.

Okay wait…. I talked about why we are becoming producers and I seemingly jumped to saving from Hell?? UHHH…. How does cabbage save people from Hell you might ask? I can understand why you would.  I asked the same thing.  Here’s the answer.  When people are starving it doesn’t take long for word to get around who has the food.  When they line up at my door I must have something to feed their physical body. More importantly, I must feed their spirit.  I explained to my children if I feed their stomach and they live one more day but at death face eternal Hell, what good have I done? None.  You can guarantee that if you share a meal with me, you will leave with an understanding of who Jesus is and what He did for you, or I’ve failed.

The practice starts now.  I must know how to provide enough food for more than my family before the time comes.  I don’t know if you’ve noticed or not, but the learning curve on some of these activities is drastically steep!  I must also start to teach people now, not wait for the starving because Jesus says Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen, Hebrews 11:1. The emphasis is NOW.  NOW I should follow Jesus whole heartedly and share Him. NOW I should learn to do these things and if the judgement delays past my lifetime, then I’ve obeyed and still I’m certain many will be impacted by the obedience.  If the least of what I’ve done is pass this teaching down to my children, I’ve climbed a mountain in my book.  I can only hope that my children will be even bolder for Jesus than I am.

It’s always a personal choice. My cabbage opportunity may not save you or anyone else if you don’t accept the message yourself. However, I must spread the word.  Jesus says Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day of the LORD cometh, for it is nigh at hand, Joel 2:1.  If the desire to grow things lives inside you…. Maybe you should delight yourself in the Lord and He will show you what it is going to accomplish.  Many times we think we have it figured out, I know I did.  Often times we find out that there is so much more Jesus is doing than we could have imagined.  He says For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, Isaiah 55:8.  However, when we let the mind of Christ be in us (Philippians 2:5) than our thoughts can be just like His and our ways be led by Him!

Amen

An Apple A Day Keeps the Doctor Away??

appleWhy the question mark? Isn’t this a known truth??

Someone once told me an old saying….. A lie told 1000 times is still a lie.

I’ve got some of your attention now don’t I! Don’t worry I used to believe this lie too. I used to think that if I grew it myself I knew what it was made of and if I knew what it was made of then I would stay healthy. Jesus shot this idea right in the foot for me.

My daughter puked today and my first thought was “we’ve been eating a lot of junk food”. I’m convicted of this thought. Why? Jesus did not say…. “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing…..oh except junk food…. and that means chips, hot dogs, school lunch, and GMO’s definitely worry about those….” Dangit! That’s NOT what He said. He said….”Do not ye yet understand, that whatsoever enters in at the mouth goes into the belly, and is cast out into the draught? But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man.” (Mathew 6:25 and 15:17-18)

Okay so you may argue that this is talking spiritual defilement. Fine, lets follow that logic trail, how then do you explain chapter 14 of Romans? I was thinking about copying the whole thing here but if you really want to follow the train, you’ll read 14. You want my synopsis? Eat what you’ve been given which is all things as long as you believe in the One who gives you life. Don’t eat anything that may lead another into sin if they don’t understand why you feel free to eat it. My statement is not nearly as convicting as chapter 14.

Let me come at this a new direction. If you DONT eat something because you’re afraid of it, what is controlling your decision? Fear or Faith? If you eat something because you don’t fear Jesus (hence if He has told you to not eat it) then what is controlling your decision? Obedience or Disobedience?

Now don’t go getting all wrapped up in the Law here because I will always tell you what you need is a deep personal relationship with Jesus, not a bunch of rules.  The law had a job to do. That job was to point to Jesus. Do the eating rules in the Law tend to show healthy results? Yes. Do they mean you can make it into heaven by following them? No. Furthermore, does Jesus not talk about how everything is good to eat now if you trust in Him? Yes. Why??

I will tell you! Jesus is the way, the truth, the LIFE. Only thru Jesus do we have life anyway even if we choose NOT to eat. “But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God”. Have not many fasted for days and weeks even? Yes.

So then does this mean that my daughter was “defiled” at heart and puked? No. What this means is that if my daughter needs healing then I need to seek the one that gives healing… Jesus. He paid for it, why wouldn’t He want us to take part in it? If I trust only changing her diet to heal her, who/what am I trusting in? Ouch right?

Here is my choice, instead of jumping straight to blaming the food we ate, ask Jesus. Here’s my prayer “Lord, forgive me for not trusting that when I prayed for you to bless my food that you did. I know that thru sin in the earth there are things that make us sick. I also know that by disobedience I can suffer consequences. Have I sinned and this is a consequence or is this just a result of sin in the world? Show me Lord and I shall repent. If there is something I need to do or not do show me. Heal my daughter Lord for I know that only you can heal and only you can give life. Thank you for the price you’ve paid.”

Jesus vs Sin…. Jesus wins. You see even if it was because the sin in the world resulted in bad food or resulted in a bad virus that doesn’t mean that I have to fear it. Jesus wins. If its due to my own sin, then confess and Jesus says “He is faithful and just to forgive us our sin and cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). If it is due to Adam’s sin, again confess it and be cleansed. This is not rocket science but admittedly, I forgot this.

So what then do I say to those that read this and think that I’m saying I can do whatever I want and Jesus will let me, and for that matter bless me for it? That’s crap. That’s what’d I’d say to that. What I’m trying to say is that if I have a true, deep, honest relationship with Jesus and He convicts me to eat differently or not eat differently than I better obey! The Lord says “Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.” Also what I’d say is that the Lord has convicted me of where my trust is. Do I trust Jesus or do I trust food? My actions must line up with my faith or its dead.

I must go pray for healing with my daughter and confess to her my sin of believing in food and not Jesus. We’ll chat again soon!