Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sunday thoughts

Last week as I sat in sacrament meeting, I was wondering in the back of my mind what I should say at the Relief Society activity on Thursday night, where I was the scheduled speaker.

Suddenly, I had the distinct thought "law of the harvest" come into my mind. VoilĂ ! I knew instantly that that was right, and I was grateful for the inspiration.

A couple of days later, I got this email from my sister-in-law Michelle:

"Every thought is a seed. If you plant crab apples, don't count on harvesting Golden Delicious." ~Bill Meyer
We have a crab apple tree and it is very messy....I'm just saying...don't go with the crab apples.

Isn't that perfect?

I really can't remember much of what I said, but I'm including my favorite parts here. This is from a talk by L. Tom Perry:

"I often marvel as I read the life of the Savior how many times the Lord used the tilling of the soil as an example in his teachings. Do you remember the parable of the sower as taught in the Gospel of Mark, chapter 4?

'And he began again to teach by the sea side: and there was gathered unto him a great multitude, so that he entered into a ship, and sat in the sea; and the whole multitude was by the sea on the land.
'And he taught them many things by parables, and said unto them in his doctrine,
'Hearken; Behold, there went out a sower to sow:
'And it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up.
'And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth:
'But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away.
'And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit.
'And other fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth, some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred.
'And he said unto them, He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.' (Mark 4:1–9.)

"The yield has no limits on its increase. Our labors will continue to bring forth more abundant harvest each year as we follow the Lord’s law of the harvest. He has bound himself to provide us with abundance so long as we will live his law in righteousness and labor for that blessing.

"Each spring as I look over an insignificant, small seed and place it in a well-prepared seed bed, I marvel at how much it will produce. Then my soul is filled with thanksgiving when I realize what can happen when that small seed begins to multiply itself, and I contemplate my potential as part of the greatest of all creations, man. I am one of His spirit children. If a seed can multiply thirty, sixty, or even a hundredfold, what then is my potential if I would but cast out the stones, clean out the thorns, cultivate deeply into the soil for a good seedbed, irrigate, and nourish? It is then that I realize there is no limit to my potential so long as I conform my life to the Lord’s law of the harvest." L. Tom Perry, “The Law of the Harvest,” New Era, Oct 1980

I love the law of the harvest and the parable of the sower, in part because they are easy for me to understand. I can relate to planting, cultivating, and harvesting. And I just love the image of our labors continuing to bring forth more abundantly with each passing year, commensurate with our obedience to God's laws. Beautiful.

And finally, some words of wisdom from Neal A. Maxwell:

"Those ... who “plow in hope” not only understand the law of the harvest but they also understand what growing seasons are all about. True, those with genuine hope may see their proximate circumstances shaken like a kaleidoscope at times, yet with the “eye of faith” they still see divine design (Alma 5:15).

"Ultimate hope, of course, is tied to Jesus and the great Atonement, with its free gift of the universal Resurrection and the proffer of God’s greatest gift, eternal life (see Moro. 7:40–41; Alma 27:28; D&C 6:13; D&C 14:7)."

I can't remember a time in my life when I have felt more grateful for the Savior's ultimate sacrifice, for the promise of eternal life and eternal families. I am more motivated than ever to sow good seeds in my life, to nourish my testimony, to cultivate good relationships, and to move forward with an "eye of faith."


Michelle said...

I really appreciate this post; I'm so glad you shared the message.

I have to say, in the process of changing my thinking to the positive, I have seen a big difference in what happens around me. It's not automatic yet, but when I do focus on the postive, on gratitude and my love of the Lord it is amazing how things fall into place. Thanks for sharing.

Susan said...

Denise and I were feeling a little blue this evening when we talked. It's not very late, after preparing myself for a busy day tomorrow, I love the comfort and peace that your words have brought. Thank you!

I miss so much the times that Grandma would teach me during our friendly conversations. She always found a way to teach me the Savior's principles in everyday, friendly and intimate talking. Your words felt like that to me.
I love you and know you have much to teach me. (My eyes are a little full right now, I'm turning in.)


Jill said...

I love it that you received the perfect inspiration and felt calm all week because of it. I'm sure the sisters learned a lot from your lesson and are grateful for your insights. These thoughts are beautiful!

rebekah said...

"those with genuine hope may see their proximate circumstances shaken like a kaleidoscope at times"

Only Elder Maxwell could express such a simple thought with such vivid imagery! I love it.

I'm in a...weird place right now. I've been trying to sow seeds for over a year now, and they keep dying by the wayside. Over and over again. I'm not really sure why, as I've been prompted with every step. It's difficult. I don't know what else to do, and all I can hope for now is a miracle.

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