Lettuce going to seed*
The above pictures show you what lettuce looks like when it is allowed to bolt and go to seed. I don't know if you can tell, but in the third photo the plant has many branches that are holding multiple flowers containing several seeds.
The other day I was outside working with some of the branches that I had cut off earlier this year. I was shaking out the branches to let the seeds fall out. I started thinking about how awesome it is that one plant produces so many seeds. Then it occurred to me that the Body of Christ is similar. We are ONE body with MANY members, just as the lettuce plant is ONE plant with MANY seeds. One plant has multiple stems branching out in different directions, all containing seeds. The Body of Christ has members branching out in different directions and hopefully not only containing the seed of the Gospel, but actually spreading that seed. Now, some of the seeds will fall onto good soil and grow into their own strong, healthy plant ready to produce more seed, and some seeds will, unfortunately, fall onto poor soil never to be seen from again. We can't always tell whether or not the soil is good, so we just need to go ahead and spread that seed anyway.
I don't know from year to year whether or not the seeds I plant in my garden will produce a bountiful harvest for my family, but it doesn't keep me from planting. Of course after planting, it's vital that I watch over the garden and tend to it so that it will flourish. I have to be diligent in keeping the pests away. I have to feed it with additional fertilizers (compost) so that it will grow strong and healthy. I have to pull out the weeds that want to take over and choke out the good stuff. I also have to water it faithfully and make sure it gets plenty of sun.
The spiritual analogies that I see simply from having a garden continually bless me! God is so good in His provision and His creation is beyond awesome. I only pray that I will take the things He shows me and put them into action. He has definitely been working on me in that area. It's not enough to be aware of God's truth, it must be acted upon!
*not my photos