“And he said, So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should cast seed into the ground; And should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how. For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear. But when the fruit is brought forth, immediately he putteth in the sickle, because the harvest is come.” – Mark 4:26-29
We can labor, we can sow, we can till, we can row, but seeds simply will not grow until the rain come. No seed will germinate without water. Jesus likened Himself and all those that would follow Him to a seed in John 12:24 when He says that the seed has to both die and then come back to life so that it can bare fruit. That dry dead seed is buried in the ground even as Christ was buried in the tomb, and we through faith are buried with Him in baptism and through the crucifying of the flesh. However, it doesn’t end there! Now the seed needs to be raised in newness of life that it might be transformed into a new creation baring fruit that the creator be glorified and others might be fed by it even as Christ was raised from the dead on the third day! But what does that seed need to bring life to it in this dead and buried state? Water! Living water! A rain! A spring! A well! A river! And what do all of these things represent in scripture? The moving of the Holy Spirit of God for it is the power of God that brings life giving, life changing resurrection power, and none other!
“Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God; Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.” – 2 Corinthians 3:5-6
“Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” – Romans 8:12-14
Prayer is a showing and releasing of faith, the rain represents the sending of the Holy Spirit of God to bring grace, which is the power of the Holy Spirit of God that gives life, by which we are made new, changed and bare fruit. This is paralleled by the invisible power that causes the seed to spring to life, grow, and produce fruit once it has been touched by the rain.
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” – Ephesians 2:8-10
Jesus also tells us in “The Parable of the Sower” (Matthew 13) that sharing the gospel with people is like planting a seed of truth in their hearts. He even tells us the different issues in the heart that will hinder the seed, showing us the express need to sometimes take the time to first “prepare the soil” to receive the seed by laboring to remove (or repent of/forsake) some things from that ground/heart. Yet as all good gardeners know, you could plant all the seeds you want and work the ground with all your strength but those seeds are still going to lay dormant until the rain comes.
“Except the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the Lord keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain.” – Psalms 127:1
So what brings the rain? Prayer! Prayer brings the rain. We see throughout scripture that prayer moves the heart and Spirit of God! Therefore, prayer is the key that opens the doors of heaven when they’ve seemed to be locked up for so long.
“If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent unto the prayer that is made in this place.” – 2 Chronicles 7:14-15
If you’ve claimed the territory (faith), labored to prepare the ground (repentance), planted the seeds (the word), yet still have not seen the harvest (fruits), then pray for rain! Pray for God to send His Holy Spirit to pour out like rain on these dead seeds in this dry and thirsty land and cause life to come into them! Pray fervently! Pray faithfully! Pray sacrificially with weeping and fasting! Pray like you’ve never prayed before and the rain will come! The Holy Spirit of God will pour out upon the seeds you have planted and you will begin to see them spring to life as the grace of God (which is the power of the Holy Spirit) flows through them, changing them, growing them, and causing them to bare fruit unto the glory of God the Father!
Pray, pray, pray, and call for rain! Pray for the living water that Jesus so often promised He would send, yet every single time He gave the promise He gave it with a condition. Every time He offered it, He said, “if you ask Me, I will give”. You see, that’s why prayer is required! You have to ask Him to send it! Upon you, upon others, upon the land. Pray, cry out, send the rain!
“You say, where is the God of Elijah? I say, where are the Elijah’s of God?” Leonard Ravinhille
“…Pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. Elijah was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months. And he prayed again, and the heaven gave rain, and the earth brought forth her fruit.” – James 5:16-18
“Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth labourers into his harvest.” – Matthew 9:38
“If ye walk in my statutes, and keep my commandments, and do them; Then I will give you rain in due season, and the land shall yield her increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit.” -Leviticus 26:3-4
“These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren….And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost,…” – Acts 1:14, 2:1-4