I Want to Be a Seed

As you can see from this picture, Koreans have beautiful smiles. Today, Pastor Steve DeVries and I ate lunch with these two ladies that we had not seen for some time. The woman on the left is Professor Im who teaches psychology. Soonja, the woman on the right works as a teacher and counselor for young women at the church she attends now. Both of them had been Bible college students and they had attended our church.

Pastor DeVries had a lunch appointment with the Soonja two days ago, but he forgot and had to reschedule for today. This was a case of divine forgetfulness, since, as a result, Professor Im and I could also be part of the lunch fellowship.

When we pulled up to Soonja's apartment building, we expected to see her, but, lo and behold, Professor Im was also waiting for us. Pastor Steve and I got out of the car to say hello. I thought Professor Im had been visiting Soonja and was on her way home, but to our delight, she was joining us for lunch.

One of the first things Professor Im said to us before getting into the car was that the Biblical Psychology class she attended a few years before had recently changed her life. She said that she hadn't believed what Pastor DeVries taught back when she was taking the class, but God had brought the classes back to mind and now she believed. Pastor DeVries was blessed to hear that.

Professor Im said that Pastor DeVries had planted a seed that had taken time to grow, and Soonja said that Pastor DeVries and I are good farmers. That was nice to hear. I'm still waiting to see if any of the seeds I have sown these past three years will grow and bear fruit, but I'm not anxious.

As the conversation swirled around inside the car, I felt myself choke up a little. That happens to me when I consider the great faithfulness of our God. Matt Redman's song "Once Again" played inside my head as we drove to the restaurant:

And once again I look upon the cross where You died
I'm humbled by Your mercy and I'm broken inside
Once again I thank You
Once again I pour out my life

These past three years, I have begun to see the impact of this little church where I serve. Our church doesn't seem to grow larger. New people come and other people go to serve God in other cities, other countries, other churches. When people leave, they are not the same people they were before they came to our church services and our Bible college classes. 

The people who go out have received the message of grace and the finished work of Christ. Their minds have been renewed and they have been equipped. They take the seeds that have been planted in them and sow them in other lives in other places. 

This morning, Pastor DeVries was, once again, faithfully teaching grace thinking through his Romans class. People who attend other churches come to learn the Bible in our Bible college and ask us to come meet them for Bible study. From what I understand, we have something unusual, something special happening here that isn't found in many places in Korea.

Every so often I get to meeting someone had the seed of the Word of God sown into his or her life by Pastor DeVries. This person has returned from one of those other cities, other countries, or other churches I mentioned before. The story of how God has used the Bible college classes and church messages in their lives and their ministry to others inspires and humbles me. 
Bury a seed in the ground and somehow life comes out of that. We don't see what is happening under the dirt, but mysteriously (at least to me) the seed sends down little roots, pushes up a tiny shoot, and with a little sunlight and moisture, thrives, grows, and produces fruit. 

Bury the seed and life just...happens. 
It may sound funny, but I want to be a seed and I want to be buried, because that's where life begins.

Truly I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains by itself. But if it dies, it produces much fruit. -- John 12:24

Enjoying my time here in Korea...


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