Daily Devotional

February 7, 2018

The Increase

I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase. – 1 Corinthians 3:6

My daughter has a number of pear trees in her backyard. Each year, during the dormant season, I prune these trees. Many suckers or shoots must be removed together with diseased or dead branches. After finishing the job, there are times when the exertion leaves me physically exhausted.

Was it worth all the effort? My answer is, Definitely! I do not always see these trees during the growing season, but when I see them in the fall of the year, I am amazed. The pears are as large as any I have ever seen. We pick them and store them for a week, and they are simply delicious.

Would the pear trees have borne pears without my effort? Of course, but the results would be smaller fruit, and some of that would most likely be damaged because the branches were too close together.

When examining these beautiful pears closely, I cannot help but wonder at God’s miracle of growth. This simple example in horticulture helped me to understand more fully my part in God’s plan. Yes, God gives the increase, but when we take a look at the first part of our focus verse, we realize that there is something for us to do.

Do you know someone who needs help? Perhaps a small child needs guidance, or an older person needs encouragement. No doubt, many of us feel we could not accomplish what Paul or Apollos did, but there is a song that says, “Little is much when God is in it.” Spiritually speaking, we all need to plant or water the field that God has given to us. Many times we are blessed to see the final results as God gives the increase.