Deal or no deal

Saving things is a part of our lives. We are constantly thinking of the reservoir; of the things that are stored up for a rainy day. Some reasons why we save things might be because we fear of spending that thing which we might not ever had the chance to get back. There are things in life that only come across once and if we spend it we might never see it again. Now, Jesus spoke on a parable of a man who gave some talents to some of his servants for them to negotiate with others, and some of them did well with the deals. Their gains were prosperous because of the type of items. There are some things in life that do not have prosperous returns when negotiated, but the things that are from God they are made to give generous prosperity, and to give great lost as well if not.

Luke 19:20 And another came, saying, Lord, behold, here is thy pound, which I have kept laid up in a napkin:
21 For I feared thee, because thou art an austere man: thou takest up that thou layedst not down, and reapest that thou didst not sow.

The servant mentioned because of his fear he put his pound or talent in a napkin and stored it. According to the vine’s dictionary the napkin or handkerchief was used to cover the head of the dead. It is something that we normally do not like to display in public, the handkerchief that is; we blow our noses with it. Our ancestors used the handkerchief to save things that were important and fragile. Taking risks and negotiating the things we have in the hankie is what God meant life to be. He has capacitate us with all sort of abilities and those abilities are to be placed in the negotiating table or at the auctioneer’s fast talk just like Zacchaeus did (Lk19:8). Zacchaeus understood that there was a richness he had not tapped in. He understood that the richness he had obtain via negotiations did not satisfy him, he was after ones that were durable (Pr. 8:18) which provided long satisfaction. Zacchaeus was willing to take out his pound from this hankie and put it out in hope that he might obtain something better and he found it; Jesus told him “Today salvation has come to this house” (Lk. 19:9).

Seed or Weed

In our times, today we find ourselves taking the form of farmers we sow seeds all over the place. We sow seeds on our children, on our jobs, on our pets and on our charity organizations. The law of reaping and sowing has been embedded in our hearts without having to pertain to any religious organization; we know that what we sow that shall we reap. It is a wonderful thing to see a seed you have sown grow into what you were expecting it to. That is why when your children grow up people say he or she is just like their mother or father, because a seed during the growing process was sown. But, what happens when another seed is sown without ones knowledge when what we are expecting to come, comes out only with a distinct characteristic. The disciples of Jesus were okay with the sower planting the seed, they understood the importance of sowing a good seed, but what caught their attention more was the bad seed; the weed seed sown and its effect.

Matthews 13:24 Jesus told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. 25 But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. 26 When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared.

One of our greatest worries in life, like it was in the disciples is the thought of a bad seed flourishing where we have sown a good seed. We expect, once we have planted a good seed to reap a good plant, but as we wait the possibility of another seed to be planted is unavoidable. Someone is always out there lurking for the opportunity to sow their seed; a bad seed. The effects of another seed to be planted yields a prospective fruit of destruction; it will choke your seeds fruit (Mt. 13:7). As in the story of Samson and Delilah Samson’s parents brought him up as a Nazarene, dedicated to God, and after he sold his gift for a bit of pleasure and love he came back to show the fruit. Now, Samson’s mother while she was at the field the Angel of the Lord came to her in the form of a man; some say that God himself came to her, and spoke to her that she, a barren women would have a baby (Jdg. 13:3). The angel of the Lord gave her a special commandment and it was to stay away from wine, or strong drink not just because Samson was dedicated to God but because it would affect him. Everything we put in side of us will affect what comes out in the now or in the long run. Maybe, Sam’s mother’s temperament would be altered when she drank alcohol while pregnant and so would Samson’s; the weed chokes the seed. Samson was a type of Christ, a redeemer who needed not a seed of weed to choke and change God’s plan. The seed we plant if not monitored will affect God’s plan for our lives. There needs to be a special attention given to the bad seeds that can be planted along side our good seeds.

Planting a good seed takes some work nowadays we need to monitor what happens after the seed is sown. When we become passives and naïve thinking that it is enough to just sow the seed and it will grow the way we want, it is when the worst comes out; a second seed is sown. Destruction comes to those who do nothing (Prov. 6:10) after the seed is sown. We need to become dusters, dusting away every bad seed being sown. The Psalmist made it clear that an active role must be taken if we want the Lord’s will to happen where we plant a seed (Ps. 132:6). He said that would not sleep until he would find a place for God and we too should not sleep until God’s perfect will is done where we planted.

The extra mile

Have you ever had the task of helping someone whose task seems never to have an end? Or, after you have worked tirelessly and exhaustively you found out that there is one last effort to make for it to one step closer to perfection, and you did not go the extra mile? The only thought that stays after you looked back on the project or situation is the “what if” I went the extra mile. Most if not all the time that we go the extra mile we come across some extraordinary benefits that find a place in our long term memory bank. The fact is that most of us, unless there are going to be some evident benefits coming our way, we are not willing to go the extra mile. The origin of going the extra mile is found in the sermon of the mount in Matthews 5:41 where Jesus tells the listeners 41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain. In this state Jesus’ reference to the extra mile was because of the Roman law which obligated the Jewish peasant to carry a soldiers back pack for a mile. The idea of going the extra mile was to gain a form of justice; what was rightly due to them.

John 20:6-15
6 Then Simon Peter came along behind him and went straight into the tomb. He saw the strips of linen lying there, 7 as well as the cloth that had been wrapped around Jesus’ head. The cloth was still lying in its place, separate from the linen. 8 Finally the other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, also went inside. He saw and believed. 9 14 At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. 15 He asked her, “Woman, why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”

Mary, Peter and John (the disciple whom Jesus loved) found themselves with the decision of whether to go the extra mile or not. Mary came to the tomb where the Master was buried and found it empty and she ran to where the disciples were to give them the news. The disciples, after being astonished with the news decided to run to the tomb and John ran faster then Peter, but when he made it to the tomb stopped and did not enter while Peter ran in. Now, this scripture lures to us understand the John’s unbelief stops him from entering the tomb, because in order to go the extra mile you need faith. Peter, however, enters the tomb and sees the scenario and leaves. He did not wait a sufficient amount of time; the extra mile, to see what would happen. Mary, on the other hand, waited more then what she needed; the extra mile, to be the first to see the risen Lord. There is a promise to them who go the extra mile for the kingdom of heaven, the promise will come (Hab.2:3).

We are promised that if we wait we will see the glory of God and his salvation (La. 3:26). Impatience is doing away with many believers these day, we cannot wait till after the end of service or prayer and see what is going to happen. In God the party starts after the end kind of like what happened at the wedding in Cana where after the wine was all gone Jesus turned the water into really good wine (Jhn 2:10); the best is after the end. James write to the church that like the farmer waits until the very end or to the latter rain (Ja. 5:7), we too need to wait and be patient, because God will come through. The Psalmist writes I will praise thee for ever, because thou hast done it: and I will wait on thy name; for it is good before thy saints(ps 52:9). God always comes through when we go the extra mile in waiting for him.