by Pastor Tim Burt
I was twenty years old when I bought my first house. Along with my first house came my first yard to keep up. After the first winter in that house, I had the joy of repairing the parts of my lawn that had been killed by winter-kill. I was in my mid twenties at that time and fairly inexperienced in home upkeep. I also liked to do everything in a hurry. I was too young and immature to appreciate the old adage, "If you are going to do something, do it right."
After buying grass seed, I would sprinkle some over the areas of dead grass from the winter-kill. Then I'd water it. A couple of weeks later, I’d be frustrated because most of the seed had not germinated and little to no new grass had sprouted.
Finally a true gardener found out about my frustration. He said, "Tim, you can either cut out the damaged lawn and replace it with a new piece of sod or do what I tell you which will take more time but get perfect results." I asked him what to do. He said it would be hard work – more than just throwing some seed. “First,’” he said, “If possible, start in the spring just after the temperature is steady at about sixty degrees. The weather is perfect for growing grass at that time of year because the slightly cooler weather helps the ground stays moist longer. That is critical to the seed germinating.” He then told me to take a gardening fork (a small hand tool to till up an area) and run it over the winter kill a section at a time. Rake it out picking up the dead grass and disposing it. Then sprinkle the seed over the tilled area and work it into the soil with the gardening fork. He prepared me. “Your yard will look ugly for about three weeks.” “Then” he said, “comes the most important part to get perfect results. You need to water it at least morning and night for a week to ten days. The seeds need to stay moist to germinate and then they need water as they sprout and begin to grow. If you do this, I guarantee you will see the results you want."
I did what he said and it has always given me perfect results. Over time I learned that the three key things to repairing my lawn are parallel to letting God build my house.
2.) Pray the Word of God. It is incorruptible seed. God’s word is His will and He says in 1 John 5:14-15, "This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us--whatever we ask--we know that we have what we asked of Him." When you meditate on God's Word it builds your faith. When you pray what you've meditated on, then you've prayed in faith.
3.) Continue to pray every time you get a chance – ESPECIALLY when you are praying over something critical to you. It's not a works thing meaning more prayer means better results. The reason to pray often is because it helps you think about God and His word and chases out the unbelief that comes with the difficult circumstances you face over and over again. Prayer is not only talking with God, it reminds you of His love and power, His promises, and that He is working in your life as you trust Him.
Prayer is the equivalent of watering. It prepares and softens your heart so you can hear from God. It helps your heart grow in faith. It will help God’s Word take root in your heart. Prayer petitions His heart according to His will. The Holy Spirit will help you remember to pray and pray often. Pray whenever you can and often! Turn off your car radio. Turn off the distractions you can control. Water the seed of your requests with the prayer that will cause your answers to sprout!
Jesus said in Mark 4:27 (NIV) "Night and day, whether he sleeps or gets up, the seed sprouts and grows, though he does not know how." When we learn God's Word and pray in faith, God is working whether we know it or not!
I wanted to build a lush yard of green grass and there were principles I needed to follow to get those results. These are the principles that help you build a strong spiritual house. They are both about planting seed and watering.
I used to try to get great results in a hurry giving no respect for how God has ordained sowing and reaping to work. I used to think I didn’t have time. Now I know that the only way to get the results I desire is to make the time. This is how the Lord builds the house. This is how to avoid building your house in vain – doing what you think is the work but getting zero results.
Psa 127:1 Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the Lord guards the city, the guard keeps watch in vain.
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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