Planting Seed

You know, I've heard the story about the seed & the sower (Matt 13:1-23) a million times, but I never really paid that much attention to the meaning. Of course the overall picture is one that I fully understand & have for some time, but I never really thought it through. It always seemed like the moral was that we should throw seed all over the place because there's always a chance that it won't take root, but maybe that's not quite what it means. What if the story is also pointing out the mistake of the sower? Just like the verse that warns against casting your pearls amongst swine (Matt 7:6), maybe the moral of the story is that we, as Christians, should be putting more effort into cultivating the soil of people before we just throw a handful of seed at them. I still don't completely agree with the concept of "relational witnessing" where you become friends with someone & then maybe perhaps if you're close enough & they just happen to ask you about God, you can half-way witness. But I'm also starting to think that maybe shotgun witnessing isn't quite the answer either. We have to use discernment from the Holy Spirit in order to know when we need to blurt it out & when we need to ease into it to ensure that the listener is prepared to receive - a detail that is different for everyone. The sower of the seed doesn't have the power to make a seed grow, but he does have the ability to chose & cultivate the soil.