Have you ever had a vegetable garden? Many people love to grow their own vegetables, to be able to go out to their yards and gather up what is usually the freshest and best tasting produce you can find. Sowing seeds and having them grow into delicious produce is quite rewarding. Of course, you have to make sure that you sow the right seeds. You can't sow pumpkin seeds and expect to reap tomatoes. You can't sow tomato seeds and expect to reap string beans. If you want tomatoes, you sow tomato seeds. If you want string beans, you sow string bean seeds. The bottom line is that you will reap what you sow.
The concept of sowing and reaping, of reaping what you sow, applies to life as well. In his letter to the Galatian church, Paul wrote, "Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that he will also reap." (Galatians 6:7, ESV) When we sow to the flesh, engaging in immorality, impurity, and sensuality, we will reap corruption. But when we sow to the Spirit, we will reap eternal life (Galatians 6:8).
The concept of sowing and reaping also applies to our relationships with others. In those relationships, if we sow words that are hurtful, critical, or filled with contempt, we cannot expect to reap love and respect. If we act in ways that are prideful or hateful, we cannot expect to reap a healthy, positive relationship with others.
If we want to reap a harvest of good relationships with others, then we must sow good, positive seeds in those relationships. The words that we use and the things that we do must reflect love, respect, and caring. How can we ensure that we are sowing those kinds of seeds? Colossians 3:17 tells us that whatever we do and whatever we say should be done in the name of Jesus. If we follow that principle, making a concerted effort to do or say only those things that we would be willing to do or say in His name, then the seeds that we sow will be good seeds. And the result will be that we will reap a harvest of good relationships.