A New Branch and The Parable of the Sower:

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A faint glimpse of the Northern Lights from town. 

This week, we will be really setting our heads down to try and accomplish the impossible task of building a new branch from scratch….which is harder than I initially thought. ( a branch is a small congregation )
At least,  it is giving me experience on how to shop for apartments and church service buildings and work with red tape and all the technical stuff missionaries never usually work with….. you’d be surprised what the mission teaches you…..
but all in all I’m doing well. I’ll provide a better letter next week.

imageThere were some things from this week that deserve more than just a mere summary……so I’ll give them justice in my next letter….
but to give you something to ponder upon this week.

You may recall Christ’s parable of the seed and the sower? I wrote about it before… (I think?)
anyhow,  a part of it that stood out to me this week when I was reading;
We focus on all the reasons why the seed does not grow……..the hard soil…the rocky soil….the thorny soil……..putting all of our attention on how the gospel does not take root in some people……..but then, we rather carelessly lump all the good soil into one category.
But if you read the text, Jesus separates the soil that is good into various grades of fertility.
as he said;
“But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.”
(Matt 13:23)
Some produce a great harvest of fruit, some produce more and some produce most….. meaning that even among those that receive the gospel into their hearts, there are grades.
These grades (or fruit, if we are to follow the parable) are manifest in one’s works…. the members that drive an hour out of there way to pick up new converts for you, (THANK YOU brother Nilsson) the youth that bring their friends to church, (THANK YOU Sundsvall youth) the members that do more than attend church, but help make the church grow… A thirty fold, compared to a hundred fold tree is the difference between one who joins the Kingdom of Heaven, and one who builds the kingdom of Heaven…..one who finds the treasure and sell all he hath and one who finds the treasure, sells all he hath and than shares the treasure…..one that is a candle and one that lights other candles…. The productivity of the tree is dependent upon the how much the tree gives.
So the question to leave you with is; if you have successfully allowed your seed to take root and become a tree, how can you increase from thirty fold to sixty fold, and sixty fold to a hundred fold? We may be free of thorns and thistles and rocks and hard soil….but our work is not finished.

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