We have to trust what is happening we cannot see.
In the garden or flowerbed, when you plant a seed do you dig it up to see what it is doing? No! You'd likely kill it. We plant seeds and let them grow. God asks us to plant seeds. He does not ask us to rip them up to see if He is doing anything!
My life, your life, my testimony or yours - are you digging up your seeds?
Slide on over to Matthew 13 - read about sowing seeds. Read about harvesting. Read about good soil and poor soil. Read about weeds. You won't read about digging up seeds!
When we share the Gospel and live God's grace we are planting seeds. Our words, our love, our caring nurture those seeds. The soil, the condition of the listener's heart, is God's domain.
Think of it this way - where do seeds grow best? In darkness, with water, soil, heat and patience. Does not matter if you are planting oak trees or seasonal grasses. Seeds do not grow well when they are disturbed. Neither do the spirits of people.
Plant the seeds. Be faithful to those who need encouragement, water them with love, shine on them with grace but don't disturb their growth. Don't dig in their dark places, where the growing is happening, leave that to God.
Pray for discernement in your nurturing and love. Be faithful and prayerful. Don't be high pressure, poking the ground, don't be judgemental, seeing what that seed is doing already and don't expect that just because you helped in the sowing that what you reap will resemble you! Our witness is to glorify God. Not us. Not a pastor. Not a faith leader. God!
The seeds that are sown will grow into what God designed. God loves the wildness and beauty of His creation. What do we do? Grow places, people and learning that looks the same, needs to be the same and rejects much that is not the same.
We are, when we get caught up in the gotta be more like me or gotta be more like our church, creating a GMO (genetically modified organism in the plant world) version of faith. It conforms. It is expected to grow the same, harvest the same. Look and sound the same. We start ministering to ourselves because it is safer.
God never asked us to dig up His seeds! He never promised safe. He promised abundant, eternal, everlasting, gracefilled and redeemed. God wants us to plant, and tend but leave the dark growing, budding and bursting through to life in His Holy Hands.