I turn 40 years old this April. There are things I’ve known for a long time, and there are things I learn or relearn daily. As I’ve been operating my own business instead of managing someone else’s, you start to think about a lot more things that you simply take for granted as a manager. If you are creating your own products, there are a lot of questions that you must think through. One thing you have to think about is the long term potential of the product. Does the thing you’re working on now have the potential to grow for you long term?
As I was wrestling with these questions, I was reminded of Jesus’ parable about a mustard seed.
31 Here is another illustration Jesus used: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a mustard seed planted in a field. 32 It is the smallest of all seeds, but it becomes the largest of garden plants; it grows into a tree, and birds come and make nests in its branches.”
I thought about how all trees start as seeds. I have apple trees in both my front yard and backyard. Each year, they grow a little larger, produce even more apples, and each of these apples contain seeds. These seeds all have the potential to become trees. There is a multiplying effect. It certainly happened with Christianity. Jesus came, sowed seeds, and today there are 2.3 billion Christians on the planet.
I’m not a farmer, but I think farmers understand how this parable works both as a Christian and also practically in their life’s work as a farmer. I am not a farmer, but I understand that this is how things work. Seeds need good soil and nurturing, but in time they do grow and have reproductive capabilities.
I believe this has powerful implications for the work each of us has to do. The thing we may have in front of us right now may seem small, but if we do the work to help the seed grow, then it has the potential to blossom into something much bigger. I think that one of the reasons a lot of people fail in business has a lot to do with not being patient enough and letting the seed grow at its own pace. Sometimes we might want the seed to grow up much faster than it can and start bearing fruit so we can eat from it. When it doesn’t, we give up and try a different type of seed putting those same expectations on it.
Practically, I know that we have to make money to live on each day. I think that having a job and starting a side business is one of the best ways to become an entrepreneur. In other cases, you may be in a position where your expenses are small or your spouse has a steady income and you can go all in right now. Regardless of your situation, I believe that if you just stay the course and keep nurturing the seed patiently, then it can certainly grow in time.
Getting a business started and growing is difficult, and if we’re not overnight successes, then it can feel defeating. I think that persistence and diligence are important ingredients. It’s possible that you may need to tweak some things if your business model isn’t realistic, but the bigger point I’d like to suggest is that sometimes all we really need to do is be patient and keep working. My question for you is, are you sowing seeds right now that have the potential to grow into trees one day for you? What are your “seeds”?
If you have questions about this and need guidance figuring out where to start, please contact me. I would love to help you figure this out.
Until then, be blessed.