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Humberto Paz

I remember the time when a group of Mennonites came to Mexico asking for some land to work and settle.

The government gave them the worst land in the community—a land full of stones, brush and hard soil—that no one wanted. After months of hard, persistent and consistent work, the Mennonites cleared the brush, and the land became very productive. Afterward, everyone in the community wanted the land back.

Luke 8:1 says that Jesus went to the cities and villages taking the Good News, and the disciples went with Him. In following Jesus, the 12 were going to experience something they had never experienced, heard or seen before. This was the process of their learning and growing in the knowledge of Jesus—knowledge of His heart, love and compassion. This would help them years later when they faced the challenges being followers of Jesus brought.

A few verses later, Luke 8:5-8, Jesus told the parable of the sower and the seed that fell on all kinds of soil without discrimination. Predictably, the condition of the soil determined the fruit it gave. The question is what to do with soil that is not ready to give fruit. Should we ignore it, abandon it and reject it? Or should we work it, soften the soil, remove the stones, remove the thorns and prepare it so that it can receive the seeds and bear fruit? Any farmer would try to develop as much of his land as possible to be productive, and would work hard to make it fruitful.

God is committed to work in our lives to make us fruitful. Personally, I know there have been areas in my life that have not produced the desired fruit. God has not given up on me, nor has He rejected, ignored or abandoned me. He continues to work in my life to bear the fruit He wants in me.

Like Jesus, we are messengers of hope to people in areas He has sent us to spread the seed of the gospel. This includes our communities and the parts of the world where the seed of the gospel has not yet produced the desired fruit. We must allow the Holy Spirit to guide us to prepare our assigned field, share Jesus and see God make the field fruitful.

Prayer Points

  • Pray for laborers—including ourselves—to go into the cities and around the world taking the Good News of the kingdom of God.
  • Pray for the Holy Spirit to give us the strategies we need for Him to be able to produce that fruit.
  • Pray that we will not be discouraged or give up on people in areas where they are not yet responding to the gospel of Jesus.

Share your thoughts. See comments below, and add your own.

and his wife, Teri, serve as area missionaries to East and Southern Africa with Foursquare Missions International.