You reap what you sow. This principle is not only true with farming and gardening, but is also a reality of the Christian life. Growth does not occur quickly. Instead, a constant and vigilant attention to the spiritual life is what eventually bears fruit in good works and godly attitudes. In our Western society of wanting everything immediately, this is a difficult principle to grasp. We may think that when we sin and lightning does not strike us right away that what we did must not have been so bad. But eventually our sin will find us out. Conversely, we might believe that when we commit ourselves to service and see no immediate benefits and results that we must be doing something wrong. So, we easily become discouraged and give up.
But the psalmist reminds us of the necessity of patience. Just as it takes continual watering to reap a harvest in the field, so the Christian’s life of weeping and tears, of tilling deeply into the things of God, is necessary to realizing a sprout, growth, and finally fruit. Thus, the tedious patient development and weeding of our souls is the task before us. If we wait, we will realize a harvest of righteousness.
Jesus taught us his Beatitudes to help us understand that righteousness, peace, and joy come through being in touch with our poverty of spirit; mourning over personal and corporate sin; becoming humble and meek; hungering and thirsting after righteousness. Only through the blood, sweat, and tears of agonizing over the state of our souls will we come through to the deep happiness of seeing the Lord accomplish great things in our lives. In other words, joy is neither cheap nor easy. It is the fruit of many tears.
Living God, plant yourself so firmly in my soul that life and joy will result. Let my mouth be filled with laughter and shout the deep satisfaction that comes from having great things in my life, through Jesus my Lord. Amen.