I have often heard and used the phrase “you reap what you sow.” It is based on a scripture: “Do not be deceived; God is not mocked, for you reap whatever you sow.” (Galatians 6:7) It is a reminder to be careful about the seeds that we plant. For eventually, those seeds will bloom, and we will reap the harvest.
Like many of you, I watched in horror, not shock, the harvest of violence and racism which recently unfolded in our country when white supremacists marched in the streets with their flags, their torches, and their scripture latent posters, among other things. Folks were outraged and beside themselves (as we all should be) that such a thing could happen.
But folks, what seeds have we sown (individually and collectively) that would allow such actions to take place? Every day, we plant seeds with the thoughts we decide to let fester, the words we speak, and the actions we take or don’t take and often without regard for the harvest.
Each time we remain silent or make statements like:
“Don’t ALL lives matter?”
“My child didn’t get into the college she wanted because they had to let minorities in.”
“Why don’t they learn to speak English?”
“God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve.” “Love the sinner, hate the sin.”
“Muslims believe they should kill anyone that doesn’t believe in Allah.”
We sow, water, till, and pluck seeds of ignorance, denial, privilege, disregard, anger, indignation, superiority, self-righteousness, fear, and so on on until they yield a harvest of frustration, anger, mistrust, rejection, shame, doubt, confusion, self-hatred and even a rejection of the Creator.
Each time we turn a blind eye to or blame victims of sexual abuse or harassment, the impoverished, educational disparities, acts of violence upon any group of people, the oversexualization of our children, an unjust legal system, any other marginalized groups or unjust acts, as well as corporate greed, we plant seeds. We plants seeds of power, self-centeredness, approval and acceptance for this way of being as well as seeds of fear, silence, hopelessness, confusion, and more acts of violence.
We are planting seeds EVERY SINGLE DAY.
I offer the following suggestions to help us plant a harvest that demonstrates our love for the Sacred, ourselves and others.
Ask ourselves each day:
“What type of seed am I planting right now - in this moment?”
“Are my thoughts, words and actions, planting seeds that will yield the harvest that I want to reap?”
Take a long hard look at our relationship with the Sacred and specifically our religious beliefs and ponder:
Do my beliefs and my relationship with the Sacred support an understanding that we are all created from a place of goodness, love and light - that we are all fearfully and wonderfully made?
Do my beliefs demonstrate that age old golden rule that is found in all major religions “do unto others as you would have them do unto you?”
Look inward (at Self) not outward and consider:
What is going on within me that allows me to respond or think the way I do?
What do I need to change about me to reap a different outcome or the harvest that I desire rather than blaming my circumstances on others?
Invest in your Shared relationships by asking:
What do I need to see or hear differently in order to sow seeds of compassion, love, justice, hope, peace, etc. for others?
Who do I need to talk to or who or what are my resources that will help me plant seeds that will yield a harvest that manifest not only my greatness but that of others?
We can change the harvest by planting a different seed. I invite each of us to consider what we are sowing. For truly, we will reap what we sow.