In Others’ Words: Seeds

“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.” ~ Robert Louis Stevenson, Scottish novelist


You ever have one of those days when you crawl into bed and think, “I didn’t accomplish anything today?”

That’s because you’re thinking “harvest,” not “seed.”

When you’re all about the harvest, you’re thinking way-too-far down the road. You’re not allowing time to play out in your life …. or someone else’s life … You’re all about now.

Not every day is a “harvest” day. Some days are ย meant for planting seeds. That conversation you had with a friend that seemed to go nowhere?

A seed.

That power struggle with your teenager that ended with yet another “no matter what, I love you” hug?

A seed.

That time in prayer when you interceded at the throne of grace and mercy … and strained to hear a yes … or a no …. and heard nothing?

A seed.

It’s good to remember that before the harvest come the seeds … and one is just as valuable as the other.

In Your Words: As you start your week, are you thinking about harvests or seeds?

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  1. February 27, 2012, 5:58 am   /  Reply

    As always, great quote. There are times some of us plant so many seeds willy nilly our gardens get choked with seedlings and less productive. With spring coming, this is a good time to strategize and plan (mostly) straight rows for maximum production and ease of weeding. We’re literally doing that now.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 7:50 am   /  Reply

      Such wise insight, Dee — the need to be careful not to over-plant our gardens.

  2. February 27, 2012, 6:08 am   /  Reply

    I’m a seed thinker. I can’t wait for the harvest in heaven though.
    ~ Wendy

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 7:51 am   /  Reply

      “Seed thinker.”
      I would agree, Wendy.
      You sow thoughts — questions, sometimes — and harvesting now and in eternity.

  3. February 27, 2012, 6:29 am   /  Reply

    Seeds, for sure. I’m starting about 6 weeks where I’m going to read craft books and start brainstorming my second ms. So I won’t see the effects right away, but whenever we learn something new, it plants a new seed.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 7:51 am   /  Reply

      Isn’t it wonderful to know exactly where you are, Lindsay?

  4. February 27, 2012, 7:22 am   /  Reply

    I’m quick to focus on the harvest, but my days are full of seed planting. Sometimes those seeds take deep root and grow, and sometimes they fall on rocky soil. It’s not always up to me to reap the harvest, but I am in control of the seeds I do plant.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 7:52 am   /  Reply

      Yes, we are in control of the seeds we plant … and, yet again, sometimes I think we are given an allotment of gifts too.

  5. February 27, 2012, 7:59 am   /  Reply

    A lot of time, I think about harvest. Thank you for bringing into perspective it’s a lot about seeds. Love this. Needed this.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 8:10 am   /  Reply

      I think we need each other, Jess — the seed planters & the harvesters. Balance. Vision.

  6. February 27, 2012, 8:11 am   /  Reply

    Oh, wow, this is great, Beth. I think my yuckiest moments of frustration are the ones in which I’m solely focused on the harvest. Not a good place to be. You nailed…I want to get excited about the seeds…the watering…uh, maybe even the fertilizing… ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 8:15 am   /  Reply

      Yep, Melissa — even the fertilizing … and all that means.

  7. February 27, 2012, 9:27 am   /  Reply

    My week will be a “seedy” one. My projects are on hold as I read for others and judge contest entries. That’s OK with me, because I love paying it forward. I’ve been blessed beyond belief by others who have done just that. Now it’s my turn. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 10:02 am   /  Reply

      I know you will sow seeds of encouragement, Keli. It’s who you are.

  8. February 27, 2012, 9:42 am   /  Reply

    I’ve been thinking about both lately. I am breathless as I watch some of the seed taking root and bearing harvest in some of my children. It feels like they are growing beyond what I even dreamed of. Others remind me that seeds grow into mature plants at individual timelines….theirs, not mine. I cannot keep them in the hothouse, but shoving them out into the buffeting wind (which other Coloradians REALLY understand) is part of loving them.

    Also, life takes root from the seed, unseen. It’s supernatural work in my garden. Unseen, by human eyes. But bursting with life in the unseen world. So too in my heart and in those I love.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 10:04 am   /  Reply

      I appreciate your perspective of both the internal and external seed planting — and ultimate harvesting.

  9. Paula Boire
    February 27, 2012, 10:35 am   /  Reply

    Wow, this one is powerful, Beth. I think in general I’m a seed planter in life but when it comes to writing, my focus can be on the wrong thing at times, although I cherish the watering, fertilizing, weeding part of the writing path.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 11:10 am   /  Reply

      That’s why I liked this quote, Paula — it made me more content with the process. The time involved with life (all aspects of it.)

  10. P. T. Bradley
    February 27, 2012, 10:53 am   /  Reply

    Planting seeds today…so I can harvest them when I get home from Deep Thinkers. Great post and concept, Beth.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 11:10 am   /  Reply

      Stay the course, Pat. ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. February 27, 2012, 12:02 pm   /  Reply

    I never thought that those days where I feel I didn’t accomplish more were seed days instead of harvest days. What a brilliant insight, Beth! Headed to retweet this now. Wow, love it!

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 12:35 pm   /  Reply

      Sharing what I’ve learned … or I’m learning, Donna.

  12. February 27, 2012, 12:50 pm   /  Reply

    Great post! I try to stay focused on the seeds, but all too often start thinking harvest. But several years ago I dreamed I’d planted a garden of dandelions (the result of my ministry efforts) and was bemoaning the fact I’d planted nothing but weeds. Then in the dream, the wind started blowing, and the seed pods on those dandelions took flight. As I prayed about this the next day, I felt God was telling me all those dandelions represented the lives I’ve invested in, and the seed pods represented the lives of those touched by the ones I’d invested in (hope that makes sense ๐Ÿ™‚ ). The results: far beyond what I’ll ever know this side of heaven. I also learned after studying about dandelions that while we may think of them as weeds, they are actually quite useful for a variety of things.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 1:17 pm   /  Reply

      What an absolutely life changing dream! Thank you for sharing it with us.

  13. February 27, 2012, 1:51 pm   /  Reply

    Oh thank you, thank you, thank you for this post, Beth. I’m definitely in a seed-planting stage of motherhood. It’s hard to be patient, but I pray these seeds will grow into a fruitful harvest in the future.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 1:56 pm   /  Reply

      Seed-planting — it’s a long season of motherhood, Sarah.
      Be patient with yourself and with your children.

  14. February 27, 2012, 2:49 pm   /  Reply

    Yes! Thank goodness for seeds. ๐Ÿ™‚
    I love coming to your site Beth because I get such clarity (which I know is so ironic after what I posted this morning, but still).
    Happy Monday!

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 3:11 pm   /  Reply

      Your blog has quickly become a must-read for me, Coleen.
      I’m thankful to know you’re encouraged here.
      I love the conversation among the commentors.

  15. February 27, 2012, 3:19 pm   /  Reply

    Oh my gosh, Beth, this is just chock full of fantastic wisdom. What a blessing it will be the next time I think I’m spinning my wheels. I’ll remember that I’m not having a bad day, it’s just a SEED DAY! Thank you.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 27, 2012, 4:39 pm   /  Reply

      I know I found freedom as I pondered that quotation. Too often I’m harvest-focused. Those sixteen words broadened my perspective.

  16. February 28, 2012, 9:08 am   /  Reply

    Great reminder as to what our responsibility is and isn’t in others’ lives. Every oak tree began as an acorn.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 28, 2012, 9:11 am   /  Reply

      I get tripped up thinking every one of my actions has to be an oak tree action — when oftentimes I am planting a seed (or an acorn.)

  17. Loree Huebner
    February 28, 2012, 8:47 pm   /  Reply

    I’m in a planting season. I select each seed. Harvest is always in the back of my mind. I’m praying for the right amount of rain and sun.

    • Beth Vogt
      February 28, 2012, 10:57 pm   /  Reply

      I like your prayerful perspective, Loree.

  18. March 6, 2012, 4:02 am   /  Reply

    […] post originally appeared on Beth’s blog February 27, […]

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