Sunday, May 16, 2010

fill it up and seal it good

I have a few friends who love to can. As one specializes in her salsa, another does jellies, jams, salsa, and just about anything you can can. I have yet to take on this task, but as I have watched them, I have learned much. My husband canned pickles last year. Not just any pickles, but sweet pickles and hot, spicy ones. I must say, they are the best I have ever eaten.
There is much to canning. It is hard work, but in that work, you reap the benefits for years to come. Most folks can their own produce. They first begin with those tiny seeds, watch them grow, and take in their harvest. As others see their labors, they begin to think they too can take in a garden and can the harvest for their family.

I like that idea of family. It all begins at home. Right there in the thick of things, down in the dirt, on your knees is where it all begins. From there, it seems to spread. As you can, you always seem to have extra to give to others. They open up their arms as you place in them the sweetness of the sacrifice of your sweat.

Years ago when farming was the only means of supporting your family, they prayed over those fields. They prayed over the workers, the seedlings, and the harvest. If it was a good year, everyone reaped in blessings from the work done by hands that were scared and bruised. If it happened to be a bad year, they found themselves on their knees once again, calling out to God. Faith grows through adversity. And something to remember is; God's delays are not God's denials. Disappointment does not have to mean disbelief. Even in those hard years of trial, God still provided, and man still made a way for him and his family.

As my Pastor quoted a few weeks ago, "GET ALL YOU CAN, CAN ALL YOU CAN, AND SET A LID ON IT." I love this. Before you can, you must gather. As you gather, you get all you can for your canning. And once you have all those jars filled, you place the lid on and seal it!

My friend who cans, just gets down right giddy when she fills those jars and sets the lids on as she places them in water. As those jars set, as that lid takes hold, you hear a "pop" when it is sealed.

We are sealed in God's love. As He places that seal upon us, there is nothing that can undo it. As we spread His word, as we learn His word, we need to get all we can. Fill ourselves up with Him, and place a lid on it, sealing our hearts with His mighty word.

If your still hungry, go back up to that buffet line, and fill your plate up again and again until you get enough. And if your like me, when something good comes across your plate, you can never get enough! There is nothing wrong with getting seconds when something is so good.

See, as we learn more about God we learn more about ourselves. The more we learn, the more we grow, and the more we grow, the more we want to learn. As we learn, those around us see a change in us. They see growth too, and as we grow those around us grow. Just like a huge garden in God's hands that He has planted with love and is praying over with care. He wants to see us grow to our fullest. He wants to see those seeds spread. The more we are filling up, the more there is to go around. That's what is so awesome about canning. We fill up our cabinets, our homes are running over with plenty from our bounty, and then we give to others so they too can enjoy. As we give it can only spread to others. And isn't that what God's love is all about?

God wants a big harvest, and one day soon, He will gather His harvest. I pray you are part of that harvest. Just think if each one of us keeps our eyes upon Him, plants, sows and reaps His blessings, others will want to get out their own jars, fill them up with good stuff and seal them up tight.

Matthew 28:18-20 " Then Jesus came to them and said, All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.

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