The Christian is Planted by the Word – Week of July 17, 2023

As the rain and the snow
come down from heaven,
and do not return to it
without watering the earth
and making it bud and flourish,
so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
Isaiah 55:10-11

As someone in early childhood, you know what I’m talking about. Seed cups. You bring in a packet of seeds—beans, marigolds, maybe grass seed. Each child has their cup with their name on it. You show them the seed. It’s small with a hard outer shell. It looks dead actually. With enthusiasm you share the key things that lifeless object needs to become a plant: soil, water, light. And then you also share that even with all those things, the growth of a seed into a plant is a miracle, something only God can do.

God uses that illustration so beautifully as a picture of faith, both the faith in our hearts and also the faith we share with others. Without faith, we might be walking around looking very much alive. However, spiritually, there is no life, no hope.

You can think of this illustration for yourself but also for what you do. Somewhere, someone told you about Jesus. The Holy Spirit planted that seed. You do the same with the children you teach. Through the Bible stories, devotions, prayers, and conversations about Jesus, you are planting a seed.

But like that little seed cup, if that’s all that happens, that seed has no chance of making it. It needs to be surrounded by nutrient rich soil. The seed needs water and it needs light. Without those things, the seed remains just a seed and eventually dies. With those things, it has the opportunity to flourish and grow.

As we think of those around us, those who are hearing about Jesus for the first time, hearing about him for the first time in a while, or those who have had faith their entire lives, they all need the same thing. They need to hear again and again the stories and message of God’s Word. Each time they hear the Word, whether it’s when they are reading the Word or hearing it from others, the Holy Spirit is working in their hearts to strengthen and encourage them.

By God’s grace, we get to be a part of that. He’s blessed us with opportunities to share his Word and encourage those around us. He’s blessed us with family and friends that do the same for us. And most importantly, he’s blessed us with his promise as found in today’s verses, “So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” It’s his Word. It’s his message. He has a purpose for it. What a blessing to be part of his family of believers who get to plant the seed of the Word and then watch the Holy Spirit create and grow faith. May God bless you with the enthusiasm of a young child and their seed cup and even more as you tell and tell and tell about the Savior!

Dear Jesus, watching things grow is a miraculous reminder of what you can do. It’s also a great reminder of how you plant and grow faith in our hearts. I ask that you keep me always excited to grow more and more in faith and in an eagerness to tell others. It’s in your name I pray. Amen

A Hymn to Consider:

On what has now been sown your blessing, Lord, bestow;
The power is yours alone to make it spring and grow.
O Lord, in grace the harvest raise and you alone shall have the praise!

To you our wants are know; from you are all our powers.
Accept what is your own and pardon what is ours.
Our praises, Lord, and prayers receive and to your Word a blessing give.
Christian Worship 21 925:1-2

For additional WELS devotional resources, including ones to share with your ECM/school families, go to:


Early Childhood Ministry Educator’s (ECME) Devotions are brought to you by WELS Commission on Lutheran Schools.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide.
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