A simple seed holds incredible power. All that is necessary for new life is contained in a seed. A small article, tucked away in the pages of a newspaper, caught my eye. It told of some seeds shed by an East Indian lotus plant that were found in a food storage area in an ancient lake deposit in southern Manchuria. The seeds successfully germinated some 450 years after they had been placed in storage.
Planting a seed is an act of faith. Most all ministries to and with persons living with a mental illness and their families begin as seeds. We do not know which seeds will germinate in the fertile darkness of the soil. We do not know who will come along to water and tend to this new life. We do not know what form our mental health outreach will take as it continues to grow and flower.
God also plants seeds in each of us. When I was in my deepest depression, I could only experience the darkness of despair. Yet, even though I felt alone and abandoned in my pain, God was planting seeds of hope, new life and new beginnings in my soul. I thank God for the faithful family members, friends and mental health professionals who continued to water those seeds until the first sprouts broke through the black soil into the fullness of light.
Each of us can plant and nourish the seeds of ministries to help erase the stigma of mental illness. Each of us can be with persons who have lost their way in the darkness because we know that each seed holds the promise and potential to bring forth new life.