As leaders should we seek to continuously deposit nuggets of truth into our people? Sometimes when we bare our heart, sharing and teaching, but see little results, sowing into the lives of others can feel like a waste of time. But we must not lose heart.
If we expect that every single seed we sow will germinate into a healthy plant, we are mistaken.
Even Jesus in his parable of the sower that said when we sow, some seed will land along the path, some on rocky ground, some on thorns, and only some on good soil that will nurture it to grow. (Matthew 13).
If you live a life of sowing, and you don’t lose heart and determination, you will reap a great harvest. As you journey forward, remember the following in your life as a leader.
- Sow all the time. Make it a life habit to share what you know, what has changed you, and what has impacted your life. Be careful not to be a walking-talking teacher, after all no one likes a person who continuously doles out knowledge. Rather, be humble. Discern the right time, and read people. When someone truly invites you to share, take the opportunity to deposit truth into their life.
- Sow to all people. Should you only sow into the lives of those who can benefit you? Only to your staff or your family? I believe great leaders sow into everyone. Even though we should have greater focus and intentionality to sow into those closest to us, we must remember that wisdom is God-given, and therefore we must share with whomever God places in our lives.
- Sow regardless of the return. This is a hard one. If you see no return, should you continue to sow? Well, you must know that the seed is good even if you never see a return. If it germinated inside of you, then the same seed can grow in others. What if only 1 in 10 people are changed by the truth you share, should you stop? What if it were 1 in 20? Or 1 in a 100? When the return is low, we need to consider improving our delivery. However, when we feel discouraged in our heart regarding the low return, we should consider quieting that voice and choose to be persistent.
- Sow more with those who have shown interest and progress. While we should sow into everyone regardless of the potential for return, I do like to dial my sowing up or down depending upon the interest and progress I see in the people I am sowing into.
- Sow because it’s the right thing to do. What motivates you to sow into the lives of others? The benefits for yourself? Few people invest in others. And fewer still invest primarily just because they love people, and not for personal gain. When leaders reach that stage—investing in people because they care about them—your effectiveness increases. Suddenly, people care more because they know you care for them.
- Sow because you have something good to give. Another reason to sow is because you have discovered a treasure, a life changing lesson. When you pass on what has been given to you, it unleashes rivers of happiness and a longing to receive more yourself.
- Sow because that’s how leaders are built and people are healed. Great leaders invest in others. Why? Because great leaders love the people they lead. Wouldn’t you want to share every piece of wisdom you’ve learned with your child if you could? You feel compelled to do that because you love your child. Great leaders are built that way. When leaders invest in their people just because they care about them, the leaders and the people often find unexpected healing. Both are touched. A balm is spread on their heart’s wounds because someone loves them enough to stop and share from their heart.
- Sow because it creates beautiful cultures. If you are a leader in your organization and want to create an enriched culture, start sowing and investing into the lives of others. What makes cultures beautiful when there is consistent sowing? People who receive the seeds suddenly feel bigger and better, and loved and supported. They will carry those feelings and the warmth that is generated will permeate the organization.
- Sow because it builds strong relationships. The obvious result of a life and culture of sowing is deep, strong relationships. When people listen and engage, they sit and talk, and they receive and change. These activities invariably knit people together into a beautiful oneness.
- Sow because Jesus said we should. If you are a follower of Yashua (Jesus), then you will want to follow his commandments as referenced in Matthew 13. The Bible also tells us in II Corinthians 9 that He gives seed to the sower. There is an expectation from God that we sow into the lives of others with the supply He gives us and a promise that when we do He will enlarge the harvest of our generosity.