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You’ve probably heard the proverb, “What you sow is what you reap”.  What does this mean?  Our lives are full of choices… these choices are the seeds we plant. It is the Law of the Harvest.

I once heard a speaker say every day you have two bags of seeds:

  • A bag of positive seeds
  • A bag of negative seeds

The outcome we get is a direct result of the seeds we plant.  Positive seeds are things like a good attitude, integrity, growth mindset, enthusiasm, support, love.   Negative seeds are things like gossip, fear, apathy, anger, blaming.

What you sow is what you reap…. enthusiasm breeds enthusiasm, action breeds action, apathy breeds apathy, anger breeds anger and so on.

We live in “NOW” society.  So much is right at our finger tips and we don’t have to wait for what we want.  Amazon, YouTube, Spotify, Hulu have created in much of our culture a “Microwave Mentality”.  We can have what we want almost immediately.

The Law of the Harvest doesn’t fit into the Microwave Mentality.  From planting a seed to the harvest is a process:

  • Plow (prepare) the ground. Research, vision, clarity, growth mindset.  Do you know where you’re going?  Why is this important?  What outcomes do you want?
  • Plant the Seed (plant the RIGHT seeds).  What actions are you taking?  Are they intentional, purposeful or accidental and whatever shows up?
  • Water the Seed.  These are your consistent actions, the repetition.  It’s not a one and done.  If you are focused on losing weight, you don’t go to the gym one time and expect to lose 5 pounds.  Watering the seed could mean eating healthy (cutting out processed food, sugars, fried food), drinking lots of water, exercising consistently, getting plenty of rest.
  • Reap the Harvest. This is where your work pays off.

The Chinese Bamboo Tree

 In Asia there is a tree called the Chinese Bamboo Tree.  It is a very hard nut that is planted 2-3 inches below the ground.  As is the case with any plant, the emergence of the Chinese Bamboo Tree requires rain (water), nutrients, carefully tended soil, and sunlight.  The farmers who grow these trees must water and fertilize them for five years BEFORE the nut will even break the dirt!  These farmers rely on complete patience and belief that if they water and fertilize every day for the next five years, something is going to grow.

In the first year… there are no visible signs of activity or development

In the second year… no growth above the soil

The third year… no growth above the soil

The fourth year… no growth above the soil

 In the fifth year of this process of pouring all their hard work and patience into this nut, they finally begin to see some results.  The tree begins by growing one-inch above the dirt and within six weeks, the bamboo tree grows 80-90 feet tall!

So, the question is this: “How does this Chinese Bamboo Tree morph into a plant that’s 80-90 feet tall in six weeks?”  Did it lie dormant for four years only to grow exponentially in the fifth year?  Or was that little tree growing underground, developing a root system and a stable base strong enough to support its potential for outward growth in the fifth year and beyond? 

 If the tree had not developed a strong unseen foundation, it could not have sustained its life as it grew.    If the farmer stopped nurturing, watering and fertilizing the seeds in the period when it was not showing up, the miraculous bamboo tree would have died in the ground.

What dreams, ideas, vision do you have that when you don’t get the results you want, you push it off to the side?  Fear and frustration can take over (I’ve poured all my resources, energy, life into this and it’s not paying off), you may want to give up, quit…

If you have a dream, a vision; protect it.  Plant the right seeds, water the seed (be consistent) and be patient.  Do the necessary steps CONSISTENTLY.

Signs of progress are often slow, frustrating and unrewarding at times…

Growth is a process…

Building a team is a process…

Learning a new skill is a process…

Change is never easy…

Stay the course.  Believe in yourself.  Do the work.   You WILL reap a harvest in due time!




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1 Comment. Leave new

  • Just this morning I had breakfast with my son who came back from your Nov 2019 BOLD Leadership session.. totally transformed with strength and determination to pursue his vision.
    I told him I was about to give up on a company/vision that I have been struggling with for 10 years with little traction.
    This simple Bamboo Tree story encourages me to keep watering.


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