The Time to Plant

The best time to plant an oak tree was twenty years ago. The next best time is now. 

Dave Chilton

There is a vital lesson in this proverb that we all must learn if we are to achieve true success in life: Real achievement takes time. Too many people have the "I want it now" or "get rich quick" mentality that can only lead to want and poverty. Whether it be the mob's numbers game of old, or the government's lottery game of modern times, there have always been those who are ready and willing to take the time and money of those who seek shortcuts to wealth and success.

The problem with shortcuts in life is they bypass the important steps of planning and hard work. Have we not observed that those who become rich quick or are thrust into positions of importance without being ready are usually cursed in the end, rather than blessed? Those who want it all without having to pay the dues now always seem to pay those dues, with interest, in the end.

And then there are those like my Granny. Granny planted two pecan trees when she was eighty years old. Most people would laugh at such an idea, but Granny planted those trees anyway. Why, you might wonder, would she do such a thing? The reason might surprise some: It was because she expected a harvest. Now, Granny did not presume on her own future, rather, she counted on what she had learned in her eighty years of life: If you want a harvest, whether it be for yourself or those who will follow, you have to plant. And, Granny enjoyed at least ten harvests of those tasty pecans before she breathed her last at 98 years of age. More important to her, there will be many more harvests for the generations that are yet to come.

How about us? Will we idly wait for our ship to come in or our number to come up, or will we roll up our sleeves and get to the hard work of planting of those trees today? Our service for God will not only reap a personal harvest of blessings, it  will also bless the live's of the generations that follow. If you have not already planted that oak of service to the King, can you think of a better time to begin than now?

A faithful man will be richly blessed, but one eager to get rich will not go unpunished.

Proverbs 28:20, NIV