Taking Personal Responsibility

Through Sowing and Reaping

One of the most often, overlooked issues in life is personal responsibility. In our contemporary society far too many are comfortable with playing the victim card — in other words, It’s not my fault — someone else is to blame. One of the clearest undeniable truths of life is summed up in this simple statement:

“A man reaps what he sows”

The principle of sowing and reaping is common throughout the Bible, because it is something that humanity can relate to. The practice of working the ground to gain a harvest is nearly as old as humanity itself. Part of Adam’s curse was that the ground would bring forth thorns and thistles in response to his work and that “by the sweat of your brow you will eat your food” (Genesis 3:19). Adam understood the concept of “you reap what you sow” both literally and figuratively. It is both a spiritual truth and a practical truth.

There are three things we must remember about this principle. The seeds, the soil, the spoils.

In Africa I am able to witness the implementation of all three of these in a very practical way. I have watched the people prepare the soil through tilling and applying fertilizer in the most basic ways of sticks and shovels. I watch the pick the seeds they wish to plant, trying their best to get the bad ones out of the way, and I have watched them diligently get the weeds under control and eventually harvest their crop (which is their only source of food for the season.) They each understand the need to take personal responsibility for the crops.

Here are three things I hope we will always remember:

We reap in kind to what we sow. Those who plant apple seeds should expect to harvest apples. Those who sow anger should expect to receive what anger naturally produces. The Bible says “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.” (Galatians 6:8) Be careful of the seed you sow.

Sowing and reaping implies a wait. Nothing good grows overnight. The farmer must be patient in order to see the fruit of his labors. God will bring forth fruit to His glory in His time. Until then, we faithfully labor in His field (Matthew 9:38), knowing that “at the proper time we will reap a harvest, if we do not give up” Do the right thing and in time it will pay off.

We reap proportionately to what we sow. The rule is, the more seed planted, the more fruit harvested. The Bible applies this law to our giving. Those who show generosity will be blessed more than those who don’t. “Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously” (2 Corinthians 9:6). This principle is not concerned with the amount of the gift but with the spirit in which it is given. You want more … sow more.

We reap more than what we sow. In other words, the law of sowing and reaping is related to the law of multiplication. Jesus spoke of seed that brought forth “a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown” (Matthew 13:8). You want to be better and impactful then keep on sowing.

One grain of wheat produces a whole head of grain. In the same way, one little fib can produce an out-of-control frenzy of falsehoods, fallacies, and fictions. Sow the wind and reap the whirlwind (Hosea 8:7). Positively, one kind deed can result in a blessing to last a lifetime.

I hope that we will all remember to accept the personal responsibility for both our sowing and reaping. NO one else is responsibility for your actions and responses. A man reaps what he sows … sow the right things!