Sowing broadly the seeds of life is how we begin to advance the life-giving message around the world. Following the model of Matthew 13, a Sower casts the seed broadly, allowing kernels to fall on several different kinds of soil. Sometimes the soil does not permit the seeds to germinate or bear much fruit, but the seed that falls on good soil bears abundant fruit: “some a hundred fold, some sixty, some thirty.” We have experienced this.
Jesus used the illustration of a farmer liberally casting his seed beyond where he walked or could reach. Jesus then invited his listeners to take His Good News of life, hope, and healing into all the world–Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and beyond–through discipleship. He wanted His seeds of life to go to the ends of the world–a very broad sowing indeed.
Sowing seed broadly allows us the opportunity to see clearly where God might be leading us. Often, the seed that falls on good soil leads to key movement leaders who will spread the message of life much further than we ever could on our own. That is when we see abundant fruit at a hundred, sixty, or thirty fold.
Let me share one example that illustrates sowing seeds broadly and the fruit that it bears.
We co-hosted a conference on the sanctity of human life in Kitwe, Zambia in May 2009 with our ministry partners, Edward and Barbra Mwansa. They invited church leaders, government leaders, school leaders and counselors, and health care workers. Over 600 people participated in this four-day conference. This was the first time that we had taught some new material that would become our primary training tool: The Journey of a Life-Giver.
As we unfolded the message of life we observed a change taking place. The content–specifically the section related to the development of children before they are born–created a brand new perspective for many attending. The majority of participants had never experienced this kind of training before.
Each day we offered times for personal, private prayer. And on our last day, during the large-group gathering, we offered a response time. Many participants repented of past abortions, and they experienced healing during this prayer time. Many past relational, spiritual, and sexual wounds were healed. Many pastors publicly committed to bringing the life-giving message into their teaching as they shepherded their flocks. We were amazed to see such personal transformation in so many lives at one time in one place!
Six years later we have seen over 50 individuals begin ministries as a result of the seed sown during this conference. We sowed broadly and many seeds took root, developing and spreading the ministry of life further, not only in Zambia but throughout Africa. After this training was completed a newly formed Kenyan team developed a vision to train 50 individual key church leaders in each of the 47 counties of Kenya. To date they’ve completed five church leader trainings toward this goal. This movement of life in Zambia and Kenya is the “abundant fruit” that Jesus spoke of!
Along with our partners around the world, we at LIFE International are learning to “sow broadly” Jesus’ seeds of love, truth, identity, hope, healing, forgiveness, and life abundant. We are seeing thousands of lives being healed and set free from life’s brokenness, hardship, struggle, hurt, and pain.
We are called to sow broadly, pray, and wait for God’s selection of leaders, then train intentionally and resource generously. Through this process, God’s message of life will keep spreading, until the global death march is halted by the unstoppable movement of life.