You Reap What You Sow – Day 9

It has been stressful times in our house as of late.  Honestly, it has been stressful for a few years.  Our family has gone through major life changes every year since 2006 and this year will be no different.  The stress has really started to come to a head.  I think the kids are probably doing the worst simply because they are kids and do not have the life experiences to really put the changes that are upon us into perspective. What do kids do when they are stressed? They act out.  Oh how they have been acting out.

The biggest challenges have been attitudes and how the kids are treating each other. myself and my husband.  I really do believe in the idea of Karma and what goes around comes around and I was going through every cliché I know to try to help explain that if they would just be nice and stop yelling then maybe everyone else would be nice and stop yelling.  Finally I said, “You reap what you sow.”  Blank stares was the response.

I asked my 8 year old what veggie she hated the most and what fruit she liked the most. Her reply was cabbage and watermelon. I told her that sowing is when you plant something, reaping is when you harvest.  I asked what she would get if she planted cabbage and what she would get if she planted watermelon?  Would she ever get watermelon if she planted cabbage?  No. I explained that cabbage was bad behavior, bad attitude, yelling, whining and in general being a brat and watermelon was being nice to the people in the house, doing her chores to help out, using an inside voice and not being or swing mean things to people.  If you keep planting cabbage all over the house are you going to get watermelon in return? Of course not, you are going to get cabbage.  Everyone listened and everyone understood.

I knew that the phrase “you reap what you sow” was biblical in nature so I googled it.

“Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.” Galatians 6:7

I read the full chapter; I had previously read half of it because it is about circumcision† but verses 1-10 really spoke to me.  My disbelief in any Gods does not mean I cannot recognize that the Bible was written by intelligent men who understood the human condition, both good and evil.

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Galatians 6:9

This alone is probably the best line I have read in the Bible at this point.  Its basically saying “keep on keeping on” and that is what we are doing here in our family. We keep working toward a pleasant stress free home and I am sure that at some point we will reap a great harvest considering how long our seeds have been sown.

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† I will not discuss circumcision here because it is a hot button subject among parents BUT if you are Christian I encourage you to truly read the New Testament and what it says about circumcision before you subject your sons to this procedure.

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7 thoughts on “You Reap What You Sow – Day 9

  1. Well Hi,
    Just stumbled across your blog this morning and I think it’s really neat! I think in a number of ways your’s and my blogs represent the exact opposite ends of the belief spectrum. I am a believer who has been struggling with my faith after probably the worst year of my life. Where your blog offers to hold your dis-belief up for scrutiny, mine is attempting to do the same with my belief. I’d love your input, if you ever have a bit to read it some, as much (ok all) of my readers are believing Christians and I’d love the perspective of a non-believer. No pressure though – only if you want.

    Regarding the post above, I’d like to caution about derivation of spiritual truths from singular isolated versus of scripture (aka – “cherry picking”). There’s an old saying (I can’t remember to whom it should be attributed) that says something to the effect of “there is sufficient evidence in scripture, taken one verse at a time, to prove that Jesus himself was a horse thief”

    Understand that Paul wrote these versus as part of a letter to the church in Galatia. There was a presumption that that in order for folks to become Christian, they needed to first become Jewish (i.e. circumcision) – kind of like Christianity was meant to be a sort of annex to the Jewish law. Paul’s basically telling them that they are being idiots. That it doesn’t matter what you do with your wiener, it’s faith that brings us to God.

    I’d like to ask you to consider the versus surrounding the two that you have quoted:

    Galatians 6 (NIV)
    5 for each one should carry their own load. 6 Nevertheless, the one who receives instruction in the word should share all good things with their instructor.
    7 Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. 8 Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. 9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. 10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

    do you see how verse 7 can take on different meanings when it is taken alone:

    Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.

    in conjunction with verse 6:

    the one who receives instruction in the word should share all good things with
    their instructor. Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps
    what he sows

    & in conjunction with verse 8:

    Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.
    Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction;
    whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life

    Taken by itself, it may be interpreted in the most general sense – the way I believe you are taking it. Kind of like Karma – you get what you put into it. That’s right of course, but I think that Paul is also showing us some specific meanings. Look at the second (w/ verse 6). Taken this way it is specifically speaking to the financial support of the church – how can we expect to get good spiritual instruction at church if the preacher is going hungry because everyone only puts their pocket change in the basket?

    The final context (w/ verse 8) goes a little deeper and I believe is why you may have been led to reading it. It’s talking about what we’re to receive from Christianity itself. Do we sow to please our flesh (the things of this world; sex, drugs, pride, work, money etc.) or Do we sow to please our spirit (works, prayer, devotion, fellowship, stewardship)? It makes a big difference. Similarly as Christians we can seek to serve the things of this world – “hey check out how big my bible is or how loud I sing in church. Hey if y’all were as holy as me you’d cut the tip of your wiener off!” or we can seek to serve the spirit – that is living what we profess to believe once we walk out the doors of the church; charity, compassion, forgiveness etc.

    Specific to you, when you pray, can you honestly say that you listen for an answer or do you pray to prove that there will be no answer? When you go to church, do you genuinely seek fellowship, or are you citing reasons to yourself about why you would prefer not to associate with these people? When you read the comments on this blog are you reading with the acceptance that you may be able to learn something from them (about people of faith if not about your own faith) or are you critique them for fault so as to support your continued disbelief. These things are sowing and if you truly want to live as a Christian for this period you’ll have to embrace, to whatever extent you are able, the notion of Christian humility. That we don’t know everything, that we can’t predict or explain everything, that sometimes things are, just because God says they are. Believe me, you are not the first person who hasn’t heard anything when they pray, but in this respect to, you will reap what you sow.

    I think that’s why Jesus tells us to come to him with the eyes of children:

    Matthew 19 (NIV)
    14 Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

    so willing and eager to believe. One of my favorite memories about being a father was watching my newborn rocking in one of those wind up swings, staring directly past the fancy, multicolored, musical mobile to consider a stone in the wall of the fireplace. It’s because both of those things were equally wondrous to him. That stone could have hopped out the wall and danced around the living room and he would have been – “Yeah, OK, what’s next?”. It’s how we come to Jesus, with open, curious eyes and a willingness to believe. It’s not as easy as it sounds because to do so we must put aside everything which we think we know about the world around us – that’s scary! We want to feel in control of our worlds, if we’re not then we’re subject to all kind of scary stuff. As Christians, our belief is that God will protect us from the scary stuff and even if he doesn’t it is due to a small part in his superior plan. What’s horrifying to us would be the realization that no only can we not control the world around us, but that no one else was in control.

    Sorry, I seem to have written a post as a comment to your post. I’ll cut it out now and I’ll go away if you tell me to. Thank you for your blog. I’m glad you’re doing it.

    • I will have a look and reply to your other comment when I have more time. I just wanted you to know I appreciate the comment and do not mind the length at all.

    • @abandonbarn, very very key thing that you mentioned about reading te verses surrounding one verse and to know the “story” behind the verses. Loved everything you had to say

  2. Dy-Anne, enjoyed your post today. You are doing great. I loved how you were teaching your kids about reaping and sowing. The fruit and veggie thing was an awesome way for them to get the concept. Keep it up ❤

  3. Excellent analogy concerning reaping what one sows. Love that you came up with that to share with your children. I’m sorry to hear of the stressful times in your home.

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