From Mustard Seed Idea to a Tree

The mustard seed of an idea grew into a magnificent tree of churches that dot surrounding Brazilian communities today.

Jean and her husband landed in Brazil more than 50 years ago as missionaries. A young couple with servants’ hearts, they planted the first church in a remote part of the land for natives in the  area.

When Jean and her husband returned from Brazil, they seeded a scholarship fund for future missionaries at Weatherford College. The fund grew and sent more missionaries to Brazil to add branches to the original church.

Last week, more than 40 years later, Jean sat at a banquet table with scholarship recipients. One gentleman received a scholarship from the endowment, graduated and served as a missionary in Brazil for 40 years. In the same area where young Jean and her husband landed and built a church. He added to the original seed’s branches.

Also at the table sat a young man and recent scholarship recipient. “The scholarship makes it possible for me to be here. And one day I hope to be a missionary,” the student spoke to Jean, not knowing he talked with the lady who established the fund that would help him fulfill his dream.

Christ told his disciples that the Kingdom of God will grow from the smallest seed into the largest plant in the garden. The kingdom they expected would not start as majestic. Rather, it  would begin as an insignificant body of believers, easily overlooked. Its greatness would come as a surprise. Like Jean’s endowed scholarship fund, still producing missionaries and a growing number of churches for Christ 40 years later.

Consider: What small action or word of encouragement have you seen grow to greater heights than imagined? What spark of inspiration has God placed on your heart that could grow into a roaring fire if only you will feed it?

What you may think is only a mustard seed of an idea has a tree of potential when God is in it.

“The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his field. Though it is the smallest of all your seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and perch in its branches.” (Matthew 13:31-32, NIV)

©2012 Gloria Ashby. Feel free to forward this devotion in its entirety, including this copyright line. Leave comments, ask questions, read past devotions, or subscribe to receive these devotions daily in your e-mail.


About Gloria Ashby

I'm a writer, speaker and teacher. I live with my husband in the DFW area, and close to our daughter and her family.
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