It seems to be second nature to me now. If you want a harvest, you MUST sow seeds.
I'm getting ready to do some gardening in buckets and have accumulated 5 gallon buckets, potting soil designed just for vegetables... all I need now are seeds. That's right, if I'm ever going to reap a harvest, I'd better sow those seeds.
Pretty simple, eh?
I talk to many individuals who are in financial trouble. Many of those individuals have stopped attending church, too. At the very least, because they have so little extra funds, sowing into God's Kingdom doesn't rank very highly on their list. Fact is, that should be the very first thing they sow into. Too often, things like cigarettes and beer, entertainment and other things take precedent over sowing seed into Kingdom causes.
One verse you may have heard quoted by many ministers at offering time is Malachi 3:10: "Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house, and try Me now in this,” says the LORD of hosts, “ If I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it."
For clarification, a "tithe" is an Old Testament principal meaning one-tenth. Many have taken this to mean "give 10% to the church." Many preachers will tell you the "storehouse" mentioned in this verse is the church because it's the place where the "meat" of the Word is stored from which God's people get "fed." I contend the Old Testament tithe has been replaced in the New Covenant and is no longer 10%, but 100%. God doesn't want our money - He wants US! Jesus gave His all and so should we. If He has us, we will likely become as heat-seeking missiles, actively praying for and looking for places to sow our seed. My experience? In doing this, we cannot out-give our loving Father whose blessings will overtake us.
Where is that "storehouse" mentioned in this verse? It's the Kingdom of God. If you aren't feeling led to pay church salaries and pave the parking lot, maybe you'd prefer to give to "Feed the Children" or buy a well or a goat for villagers through "Gospel for Asia." On the other hand, maybe there's a single mom you know whose kids have no warm coats or shoes that fit. By doing these things, you are sowing into God's Kingdom.
So, SOW! Sow as if your life depended on it, prayerfully, obediently and cheerfully giving what you've been given.
There are very few Americans who have absolutely NO MONEY. We always seem to come up with enough to buy what we want even if it's just enough for gas to get to the clubs, booze, drugs, etc. I remember one Sunday having only 86 cents to my name. I reasoned that God could do more with that money than I could. So, I tossed it into the offering plate! In those rare instances where one is truly penniless and cannot sow financial seeds, start by sowing seeds of kindness, time as a volunteer, used clothes to Goodwill, paint an old lady's kitchen, etc. We can never go wrong by investing in people.
One more thought... sowing seeds does NOT only pertain to money. Reaping and sowing is a basic Kingdom principal that must NOT be overlooked. How we treat people is how we will be treated. Plant an apple seed and get an apple tree. You get the picture.
God bless your sowing ministry!
Founder, The Church @ Work (TCAW)