When I began dating my husband Gary, his family was more than happy to introduce me to family farm life in rural Minnesota. I grew up in suburban Minneapolis and had spent only limited time on farms in my extended family. Gary grew up in Plainview, living and breathing life on a farm that had been in his family for almost 100 years.
Gary was dating a “city girl!” He was delighted to expose me to the splendors of farming. Wide-open spaces…gardens…plucking chickens. I smiled. I grimaced. I worked in family production lines. It was mostly fun.
One spring, I was introduced to the challenging and confusing practice of picking rocks in the newly-plowed and very muddy field. Our job was to pick up rocks and throw them on a flatbed trailer. When the trailer was full, it was taken over to another area where the rocks were added to an ever-growing stone wall. I was confused.
If this farm had been in the family for generations…if they picked rocks EVERY spring…then why were there still rocks in the field?
I know, definitely a city girl question. But if you’re a farmer in Minnesota, you know there are countless rocks deep below the surface.
A farmer does not go digging for rocks.
If he wants his spring planting season to be successful, one that allows seeds to take root and results in a fruitful harvest, he needs to remove the new rocks that have worked their way to the surface throughout the winter.
This process takes place year after year. It is necessary for a fruitful harvest.
Like these fields in Minnesota, you and I have spiritual and emotional rocks that stay hidden beneath the surface. We are able to do just fine if these “rocks” stay where they are. However, as we walk with the Lord and we go from “glory to glory” with Him, He has a way of bringing these buried issues to the surface.
He gives us an opportunity for an upgrade.
If we want to live the abundant life that Jesus paid for with His precious life, we need to be willing to deal with the rocks that surface in our lives season after season. It is part of our journey with Jesus. It is good.
At Dare to Believe Ministries we specialize in helping you deal with the rocks in your life. Many people have asked (me included), “Am I done yet?” We get weary, frustrated, angry, hopeless and want to quit. If we do quit, we miss our opportunity for upgrade.
This life is a process of becoming more like Jesus.
We won’t be like Him totally until we are in heaven. But on this earth, we are given the opportunity – when the Lord brings rocks to the surface – to dig them up so we can live in greater freedom and abundance. It is always worth it.
Our Lord is so gracious to us. We don’t have to go digging for issues. Instead, He brings things to the surface when it is the right season to address the issues. So we can receive healing and freedom.
We all have the capacity to be the “good soil” that Jesus refers to in the parable of the sower (Matthew 13). What Jesus wants to do through your life will produce a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown, if we allow the rocks to surface. Let’s get rid of some rocks!
2020 has been quite a challenging season.
The combination of all that has come at us politically, spiritually, physically and socially is causing many things to come to the surface in each of us, our families and society.
Sometimes when I look at all that is going on in our world, all I see are the huge boulders of prejudice, hate, fear and rebellion. Hopelessness threatens to creep in. Frustration and anger offer to take over. I need to remind myself daily that I serve a God who always offers me hope.
There has been some serious shaking.
This has revealed some big and ugly boulders. These boulders don’t take God by surprise. They have been with us all along. Some have been deep beneath the surface. Some were just breaking through. Now we are seeing it all. The huge, ugly boulders have been revealed.
It is time to partner with heaven to see these boulders removed.
God can do this! He wants to do this!
We have an unprecedented opportunity in this time in history to partner with our God to remove these boulders from ourselves and our society. To prepare the soil of humanity for a great planting of the Lord. This is a time for a fruitful and glorious harvest.
Hebrews 12 holds so much wisdom for us in this season.
Verse 2 reminds us to keep our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfector of our faith. When we take our eyes off Jesus and look at the world…yikes! Yet, God has not surrendered His authority. He is still God.
Are we praying? Are we worshipping? Are we keeping our eyes on Jesus more than our eyes are on our circumstances? Be careful in this time not to let frustration and anger take over. Don’t let hopelessness creep in.
Verse 25 reminds us we need to listen to the God who is speaking. He says He will shake not only the earth, but the heavens, too. Sounds scary, doesn’t it? But as long as we cooperate with heaven, allowing the Lord to bring up what needs to be dealt with, we can be assured that we are receiving a kingdom that CANNOT BE SHAKEN.
Verse 28 reveals how we can receive this unshakable kingdom – through thankfulness and worship with reverence and awe.
This is not a time to be discouraged – it is a time to have courage.
It is not a time to give up, it is a time to look up. Worship, pray, encourage each other.
We will get through this. There is always hope.
Because of Jesus, we have received an unshakable kingdom. He is our strength. He is our foundation. He is our hope.
Pastor Kristi Graner