Pour Down Like Rain

Rain falls, saturates the dry earth and plants. Tree, flowers, crops, soil, all benefit from the rainfall. With no rain the plants wither and dry, the ground hardens and cracks, thirsting for a shower to end the drought.It appears all is lost when rain refuses to fall.
“O God you are my God; early will I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh longs for you; In a dry and thirsty land where there is no water.” Ps.63:1
I need the rain. You do too. Not the moisture falling from the skies…no, the rain that refreshes our spirits, the falling of His presence, saturating the depths of our spirits. Likes the trees and plants His rain falling on us, causing growth and producing fruit many feed from. The showers God sends to our inward man cause the cracked dry soil of our existence, become a dark rich loam, growing new seedlings in undeveloped areas, those places we have  ignored too long.
His showering to make us a well-watered garden, a picture of gracefulness, where everything produces after it’s kind. We being so saturated by Him, that living waters gush from within us so others may drink and be satisfied. God send the rain.
May the Lord send his rain down on you and fill your every moment with His Holy Presence. May you be known for His love in you. May His wisdom in you be obvious to all. May His kindness be your character, His name never leave your breath. May you grow, give, and gather through Jesus, the name above every name. Let it be.
Thanks for reading, God bless and keep you all.
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You, the Gardener pt.3

Word thieves, seed stealing crows, plant killing critters, dwell with us to keep us vigilant in maintaining our garden. Our lives are designed to thrive and achieve the impossible to carnal thinking, limited only by the gray matter input and outgo. Seeds planted in us to hold us in constant check, unsure of ourselves by trusting in the word-seeds planted in our lives by the jealous and envious. We need continual re-inforcement of our goodness and abilities to press forward in nearly every endeavor. Why?
Is there a choice to make that you and I know by instinct what to do? There are logically things we know are wrong for us. We know it is wrong to rob a bank, tell lies about an innocent person, kill somebody because we don’t like their hairstyle, and anything society deems wrong that will place us in prison. But the day to day decisions, or opportunities that come, we always seem to need someone’s opinion to move forward or forget the whole idea.
Our lack of self-confidence is a direct result of the seeds sown in us by others, and seeds of past actions that resulted in failure. The crime is, that we live in fear of what may be, instead of the possibility of what we can aspire to. We reap the result of seeds of unbelief, and doubt, and in turn, plant those seeds in others because of our unbelievable unbelief.
I am guilty of this more than anyone I know. The need for unanimous approval from others, the need of acceptance, and the fear of man’s rejection, caused my life to take some nasty turns and twists, landing myself on a barstool. I sowed seeds of pride, thinking I was better than that, and reaped corrupt living wreaking  havoc in others gardens as well.
“The alcoholic is like a tornado roaring his way through the lives of others.” AA’s Big Book, pg.82 Not planting humility in pride’s place causes anyone to demand their will on others without the slightest notion of what they are doing and what they will reap as a result. It is not just a individual with substance addictions that cause the tornadic effect. Anyone attempting to control others is the tornado, and leaves behind a garden of problems seemingly unfixable. These are the seed stealing birds, and crop eating critters. How do I change? How do I get rid of what has stolen,  my ambitions and joy?
“For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap life everlasting.” Gal.6:6 Reject thoughts of failure by filling your heart and mind with Truth. Make decisions prayerfully, asking God for advice first. He will lead you to the right sources, others who have godly wisdom and knowledge of what you are seeking. Don’t even consider asking advice from negative Word-thieves. Carnally minded people have no spiritual understanding, and will take the seed of hope and of faith out of your garden. Fill your thinking by the guidance of scriptures:
“Be anxious (nervously troubled) for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, WITH THANKSGIVING, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses UNDERSTANDING, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”  Phil.4:5-6 “I CAN DO ALL things through Christ who strengthens me.” vs.13 “And my God shall supply ALL your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” vs.19 (NKJV)
Reject stinking thinking, get a check up from the neck up. Live your life full of promise, hope, faith, and trust in the One who knows no limitations. Plant the Seed of Christ in others and laugh at thoughts (seeds) of carnal can’t do, and failure. You do not need man’s acceptance, or approval from jealous, envious people living in darkness only thinking of themselves. Realize that “greater is He living in you, than he that’s in this world.”
I hope and pray that if you have struggled in life from living unconfidently, from poor parental guidance, or any negative environment, or perhaps you struggle with a sickness or a handicap, even you who may be bullied by a boss or a schoolmate, till up the garden in you. Re-plant seeds of life and of God-confidence. You are the gardener, grow strong and live courageously in Christ.
Thanks for reading, God bless and keep you all. Keith

You, the Gardener, pt.2

Attending AA or NA meetings, if you listen with open ears and an open heart your eyes will open to reality of what you have become. The best way to explain it  you grow into what have become. Words, actions, and attitudes are seeds, and our life is a garden plot. As in the physical realm, we go through springtime and/or planting season, summer cultivating and working the garden, fall for harvesting our crop, and winter…the place of life where nothing grows, and those crops we worked so hard to grow, dies, and we plan the next season.

I have had the privilege of teaming up and growing a garden from time to time. Tilling the soil, planting the seeds, watering and fertilizing, weeding, and keeping critters away, all must be done to grow a beautiful, producing crop to reap. To pull ripe tomato, pepper, or even a green onion from the garden, and taste it…mmm, tasty fresh and different from store-bought.

Springtime we experience in life is where by those seeds of words we speak, actions we perform, and attitudes we maintain, are planted in the prepared soil. We have no idea of our growing this garden, but that is what we are doing. To plant in others seeds of hope, faith, confidence, and trust; I must talk to them as equals, ensured of their abilities and building them up. The seed is planted. Summertime, I continue to express my confidence in weeding out doubt, watering with continued trust, and keeping predators away by encouragement.

The fall brings harvest, I can see that my hard work with the one God has entrusted to my stewardship, has grown into a solid, marvelous fruit bearing individual. Then comes winter. I have harvested the person-plant and now they are on their own with their wintertime and dying to self-will and receiving the annual sleeping and dreaming, resting and planning the garden they will build, as they plant seeds in their garden of others. I have grown a garden, reproducing after my kind. It was hard work, and was costly of time and effort, but its beauty was worth the effort.

God in His wisdom, established the seasons in our lives for a purpose. We have no idea how that our words, actions, and attitudes have created our lifestyle and laid future plans for a bountiful harvest. I must take care to plant the right seeds.

Each day has four seasons in it. Each day I plant seeds in myself and others. I water, weed, and harvest daily.  If I plant doubt in me or in another, I will not reap a confident other, and certainly not a confident self. If I plant slothful or procrastination actions in myself, I will not reap success in life. You get the picture. Think about what you say, each and every conversation is important, and has recompense. It is important to speak life, to speak faith, to speak in rebuke to fear, and trouble.

“My son, give attention to my words; incline your ear to my sayings. Do not let them depart from your eyes; keep them in the midst of your heart; for they are life to those who find them, and health to all their flesh.” Prov. 4:20-22 …”let your heart retain my words; keep my commands and live. Get wisdom, get understanding! Do not forget, nor turn away from the words of my mouth.” vs. 4,5 “Hear, my son, and receive my sayings, and the years of your life will be many.” vs. 10

What are you planting in yourself? in others? Give thought to the above passages, especially to the children. You, the gardener, will grow a garden of good, or a garden of evil in others…and in you, by words, actions, and attitudes. Tomorrow, I plan to talk more on this, and with the thoughts that I have now, it may not be pleasant, but could be wonderful.

Thanks for reading, God bless and keep you all. Keith

You, the Gardener

Everytime I see a well groomed garden I think of God’s creation of seeds, herbs, and trees on the third day.

Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb that yields seed, and the fruit tree that yields fruit according to its kind, whose seed is in itself, on the earth”; and it was so.

Everything is to produce after its kind. I also see that the garden I am admiring took alot of work to beautify it. It takes seed, water, fertilizer, weeding, and eventually, harvesting. If you have ever worked a garden you know the commitment is season long. Take just a week without tending the garden, and your efforts up to that point may be in vain. Weeds, birds, and other critters may have taken the garden over. Or a few days of hot sun and no moisture, your crop may be burned up.

Words, actions, and attitudes are seeds. These seeds produce after their kind as well. The seed of every word we speak is watered and fertilized by our actions and the harvest follows as we diligently weed the garden by repetitive words of like manner. The harvest is bountiful, we sowed, and now we reap. This is very noticable in raising children.

It can be a wonderful experience for the entire family when we plant encouragement and confidence from God’s Word in our children. When the child grows to believe that they can rise to the challenge in every endeavor, as we weed out negativity and self-doubt. We water the seeds that have developed into a thriving plant with teaching the children the importance of giving themselves in service of others. And then as the plant matures, we shoo away the birds and critters, or bad company, with understanding and wisdom about the intent of evil influence.

This does not in any way mean the the child will be perfect in their lifetime, and never err. But consider the alternative, the way most kids are raised in this society. Plant the seeds of anger and self-service by harping out profanities and threats over them from early adolescence. Cultivate it with pointing out every flaw and defect. Then put a band-aid on the deep gash by buying them the most exspensive clothes, video games, etc.  Tell the little gifts from God how they are worthless, and act ugly like their mom or dad, and you’ll reap a whirlwind harvest of a bitter, and angry child, looking to anyone but you for comfort.

“Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.” Gal.6;7 (NKJV) 

That comfort may bring an unwanted pregnancy, or an addiction that ends their young life. The TV has been your babysitter and every moral the plant has, is amoral. They learned to believe anything. Unfortunately, insult is added to injury as we water the plant with words like, I knew you would end up this way!

We don’t even see our part. We led them right to crows and critters with actions and attitudes, but expected them to turn out okay. How can we change this plant and cause it to thrive again? First of all, see your part, look at how the child finds you repulsive, if that’s the case. Repent. That means, turn and go the other direction. Ask God to help you find the right words, words that heal. Then set down with them and apologize for all of the damage you have done. Don’t allow pride to stop the possibility of watering the garden back to life. Don’t retort to their angry response that you may receive. If you feel the need to raise your voice in anger, take five, go to another room, pray again, then finish the conversation.

Now live the amends to the child by remaining calm when they rock you with bad attitudes and actions. Keep in mind they developed under your teachings, or how you tended the garden of their heart. There will be days that you will want to uncork on them, don’t. If they need to be disciplined, do so with love, and stick to your measures. You may change, they may not right away. In time you will see your seed grow into that thriving garden.

This is an example of the seeds we plant with things we say. There is so much I would like to say, examples other than in child rearing, especially those areas I personally experienced both good and bad regarding sowing and reaping…perhaps later

Thanks for reading, god bless and keep you all. Keith