Mystery Garden

Mystery Garden
From the March 18th reading
What is in your garden? What tools has God placed in your hands? Read here to discover God’s plan for our lives.
1 Corinthians 3:7-8
So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. (NIV)
  • It is not the workers who produce a crop – it is God
  • One person’s job is to plant
  • Another person’s job is to water
  • They both will be rewarded for their labor.



  • We all need to be either planting seeds or watering
  • Evangelizing
  • Or Discipling / Encouraging / Mentoring
  • It is God who works in the hearts of people
  • We will be rewarded for all that we do to make disciples
I remember many years ago when we bought our first house. We were so excited and couldn’t wait to get our young family of six moved in. We had shopped for months, and God led us to just the right house. Shortly after moving in I discovered a small garden on the side of the house that had already been planted. It was a winter garden. I had never planted a winter garden, and didn’t recognize all of the plants. So I began to weed it, and to water it each day. I love to see things grow, and was excited to see what kind of vegetables had been planted here. There was one plant that I had guessed was spinach, and I had picked off and ate a few of the leaves while waiting for them to fully grow. One day I realized that these were not spinach plants, but were in fact broccoli plants. After getting over feeling foolish, I couldn’t wait to try our home grown broccoli. The day finally came. I cut off several heads of broccoli. They were so deep, rich, and green in color. I had never seen broccoli like this in the store. Shelli cooked them up for us, and they were by far the best broccoli I had ever eaten. Store bought broccoli has never even come close since.
This story of my gardening skills, illustrates this passage for us … I hope! I didn’t plant this garden. I didn’t dig up the soil, mix in fertilizer, or even plant the seeds. All I did was water and pull a few of the weeds. One of us planted, and the other watered, but we did not make these beautiful green plants grow.
The same is true when it comes to making disciples. It is much like planting a seed and watching it grow. One person many times shares the gospel, and another comes along to encourage and nurture that new believer to maturity in Christ. But it is the Lord who produces the results.
One author says this about this passage in 1 Corinthians 3: Apollos and Paul were given their ministries by Christ (Eph. 4:11). They were the means, not the cause, whereby the Corinthians believed (cf. 1 Cor. 2:4–5). God alone produced results. God made the seed grow (3:6). Therefore God alone should get the credit (v. 7). As servants, Paul and Apollos were not competing against each other but were complementing each other’s ministries (v. 8). Their purpose was to bring the church to maturity, to Christlikeness (Eph. 4:12–13). In accord with their faithfulness to that task would come their reward (cf. 1 Cor. 4:2–5). For though a minister served the church he was basically responsible to God. Paul and Apollos were fellow workers who belonged to God and worked for Him in His field, the church (3:9).
[The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures (Vol. 2, p. 511)]
God assigns some of us the task of evangelizing. All of us are commanded to do it (Matt. 28:19-20; Acts. 1:8), but for some of us it comes more naturally. Then, there are those who are spiritually wired to disciple, coach, and mentor. Each play an important part in the task of “making disciples”, and one is not more important than the other.
Warren Wiersbe says this, “The work of the pastor is to help the church grow spiritually and mature in the Lord. This is done by the steady, balanced ministry of the Word. Ephesians 4:1–16 explains how this is done: It is necessary for each member of the body to make his own contribution. God gives spiritual gifts to His people, and then He gives these gifted people to the various churches to build up the saints. As the believers grow, they build the church.”
[Wiersbe, W. W. (1996). The Bible exposition commentary (Vol. 1, p. 578)]
It is exciting to realize that we all have a part to play in God’s major plan for building His Kingdom. We aren’t all called to do the same thing, but we have all been strategically gifted by His Spirit (1 Cor. 12:7-11). This shouldn’t be seen as a burden, but a privilege. We have been given a purpose in this life that is far greater than our career, our income, or our portfolio.
Paul continues with these important instructions, “The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building.” 1 Corinthians 3:8-9 (NIV) We have been given a purpose, a reason for living, and one that will be rewarded. We are co-workers in God’s massive plantation – some of us planting, others watering, and some even weeding.
So, whether you have a rake or a shovel in your hands, God has given you a purpose for your life. He has given you a role to play. What is your role? What has God specifically designed for you to do? What is your God-given purpose?
Just dig in and watch what God does! It’s pretty amazing!
Ask God to show you clearly His purpose for your life. If you need direction see your pastor or someone that you trust. Seek it out, and try it on for size!
If you would like help in growing in your faith, or if you would like to know how to have faith in Him, then please contact us at (928)636-2949 or email me at

2 Responses to “Mystery Garden”

  1. Christine Brann says:

    My purpose is to glorify God in heaven in the way I love. I was listening to David Jeremiah and James Mac Donald and both of them defined “glorify” as to evidence. I pray my life shows evidence of Christ in me. I’m praying for Him to continue refining me so I grow and find a new way to serve Him.

  2. Christine Brann says:

    Correction: in the way I live

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