The Plowshare

Once upon a time a farmer surveyed his fields. As he looked, all he could see was the devastation left from the storm. His crops were ruined. What was he supposed to do? Was it too late to replant? 

Totally discouraged he prayed, “O Lord, give me wisdom, strength and peace. I don’t know what I should do?” Suddenly he heard, “Be still and know that I am God.” (Ps. 46:10) 

As he pondered the word from the Lord, he realized that “Be still” was an inner attitude, not inaction. It definitely did not mean – do nothing!

Yes, he would have to clean up the damage from the storm, but when that was completed the farmer was unsure of his next step.

A week passed and the debris had been removed. “Be still” remained his focus. He rested, prayed and spent extra time with his family.

He had peace that he was following the Lord’s instructions. Meanwhile, his fields remained fallow (unplanted). 

His family and friends kept asking him what he was going to do. He replied that he was trusting the Lord and trying to “Be still.”

He sharpened his tools and got his farm machinery ready. Still his fields remained fallow. By now it was too late to replant.

He studied about the Israelite farmers in the Old Testament. They were commanded to let their fields lie fallow during the seventh year. “Six years thou shalt sow thy field, and six years thou shalt prune thy vineyards and gather the fruit thereof. But the seventh year shall be a sabbath of rest unto the land, a sabbath unto the Lord.” (Lev 25:3-4) 

He came to understand that the fallow field year was a time of refreshing. He experienced the Lord’s peace and goodness.

He understood that the Lord had him in His hands. He learned to savor this special time with the Lord.

Then spring came. The Lord told the farmer it was time to “break up his fallow ground.” (Hosea 10:12) The farmer got his sharpened plowshare and joyfully began to till his fields. He was now in a new season…. And so it is with us.

Sometimes we get frustrated or discouraged when it seems the Lord does not allow us to plant. Sometimes He has us in a season of rest and trust. Pushing against the restraints often brings more frustrations, but when we decide to be still, and know that He is God, we discover that He really is able. When He is ready to restart our growing season, He, Himself, will take His plowshare. He will cut through the weeds that have been in our lives. 

The new season might look different than the past, but that’s okay. Life is not stagnant. Are you willing to be in a fallow season?

Being fallow is beneficial to both the soil and the soul. The Lord uses it to restore and refresh. If you allow Him, the Master Gardener will lovingly enable your life to grow, prosper and flourish for His kingdom. Are you willing?

~Marianne Wright