by Barbara Latta
A trip to Home Depot had my gardening juices salivating at all the choices of beautiful plants Iwanted to get my hands into. I had a list of what I wanted because I knew what would happen if I went into the garden center without one. And I still picked up a couple of things that were not on my list simply because they were too beautiful to resist.
I had my muscle with me so after arriving back at home, my husband was the hole digger. I supervised, of course, and placed the plants where I wanted them to grow. To ensure healthy growth and beautiful blooms, we added topsoil and fertilizer to those in the yard and used specialty soil for the plants that grow in containers. I couldn’t expect to have an abundant harvest of flowers if all I did was stick them into the hard Georgia clay we are blessed with.
And wa-la, because of the good soil we used, we will have beauty to enjoy all summer long.
We can learn a lesson from planting experiences in reference to our relationship with God. Why do some people reap results from God’s Word and some reap little or nothing?
Jesus told a parable in Mark 4 relating how God’s Word is a seed we plant into our hearts. The difference in growth is the soil, not the seed. The seed is the same because the Word never changes, but some people see different results because of the condition of their heart when the Word is heard.
The types of heart ground Jesus talked about are:
Apathetic Heart: Some seed fell beside the road and birds came and ate them. These are like those who hear a message, but are not interested or don’t care. Satan can steal the word from their hearts before it has a chance to be understood.
Rootless Heart: The next seed fell on rocks without much soil, a plant grew quickly but because it had no depth the sun scorched it because there was no strong root. The Word can be received by these people and they are happy with the message they hear, but after temptation or trouble comes they give up because they have no deep roots in the Word and there is nothing to hold them up.
Distracted Heart: The seed that fell into thorns was choked up and didn’t yield a harvest. This group of people puts more emphasis on their problems and the desire for things than listening to the Word of God so the seed has no chance to grow in their lives.
Fertile Heart: The last seed fell into good soil and grew a large, abundant crop. These are the ones who spend time in the Word listening to God and praying so the seed of the Word produces results in their lives and every need is met.
|This begonia was too beautiful to resist.|
All of us who have been believers for any length of time have probably been in each of these groups at one time or another. The important lesson we learn from this parable is what Jesus said after sharing this story with his disciples:
And He was saying to the, “Take care what you listen to. By your standard of measure it will be measured to you; and more will be given you besides. For whoever has, to him more shall be given; and whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him (Mark 4:24-25 NASB).
We can learn from planting season as we watch seeds grow in gardens. Our heart is God’s garden and it is our responsibility to prepare the soil for the seed to be planted in so we can reap the harvest of understanding and living in God’s Word.
What are some ways you plant God’s Word as seeds? Share your thoughts and ideas.