Willows and Wheatfields…for a blog name?
It might seem a little strange to name a blog after plants. Especially when this is not a gardening blog. But I couldn’t not name this blog Willows and Wheatfields.
As a Christian, I constantly see Jesus speaking to people in agrarian terms in the Scriptures. He was teaching to an agrarian culture. He was teaching men and women who understood the meaning behind the statement, “Unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.” (John 12:24).
Wheat is interesting compared to other seeding plants. Unlike an apple that might have 5-10 seeds at its core, one tiny wheat kernel contains 50 seeds, which can then create 50 new wheat stalks. Then when each of those 50 wheat stalks each produce 50 more seeds, you have a produce of 2500 seeds. Interestingly, the way this multiplication occurs is through death. The seed must die in order to multiply.
In the same way, Christ bids us to come and die. As Christians, we must be willing to die to ourselves and live for Someone much greater—Who is, Jesus Christ.
Willows and wheatfields are common, everyday things yet they hold incredible truths from which we all could learn. A willow is strong, majestic, and well, a tree. We see trees everywhere. We walk by them, drive by them, and even sit under them without stopping to realize how magnificent they are. They provide shade, sustenance, and nourishment. Their root systems can spread out 100 feet beyond the stump. They provide homes for animals and humans alike, and they provide safety in many different forms. This is the tree that we pass by and don’t think twice about.
In the same way, wheatfields are filled with nourishment—food that feeds every person on the planet. Wheatfields are also swarming with life—below the surface where we cannot see, and above the stems, flitting from kernel to kernel.
If we take a moment to realize the majesty of these two plants, we cannot help but be awestruck. In the same way, if we take a moment to recognize that these two ordinary things- trees and wheat- we will see that they point us to the One who causes us to find the beauty in the ordinary, Jesus Christ. For Christ allowed Himself to die on a tree so that the return of his death would be life and life eternal…with His people.
I hope that Willows and Wheatfields can be a place where you read about the ordinary of my life to then recognize the beauty in the ordinary lives we share.
One last thing. As humans on this earth, we will face pain. We will face tragedy. And we will—at one time or another—face death, whether that is an actual death of a loved one, a death of a dream, or even death of a part of our spirit. But there is Hope, even in the loss and grief—even in the death. For in Jesus Christ we are promised life amidst death. And if we are willing to come abide in Him—if we are willing to die to self and live for Christ— we will be given new life and hope amidst the pain and griefs and deaths of this world! And through that death, there will be life that sprouts anew, just like the beautiful wheat kernels who model this for us every season.
So go, friends, and enjoy the willows and wheatfields all around you. And don’t forget to smile and pause when you notice them because it is the little things that make up the beautiful moments of our lives. And it is in these things that you get to see glimpses of the One who created them all.