Fertile Soil (Mar 28)

fertilesoil

From Open Up Your Heart by Jeff Syverson

March 28
Fertile Soil

Today’s Scripture Readings: Psalm 44:17-26 | Deuteronomy 9:1-10:22 | Luke 8:4-21 | Proverbs 12:2-3

Today’s Scripture Focus: Luke 8:4-21

“A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds ate it up. Some fell on rocky ground, and when it came up, the plants withered because they had no moisture. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown. (Luke 8:5-8 NIV)

Is God’s word growing and producing a bountiful harvest of righteousness in you? What is the condition of the soil of your heart?

Jesus tells us that God’s word sometimes ends up on a rocky path where it is trampled upon and eaten by the birds. This is a heart where the seed is stolen before it can take root and grow. The word doesn’t have a chance in such a heart.

Other times God’s word is planted in rocky ground. These hearts initially hear the good news, but their roots are unable to go down deep and they quickly dry up in the time of testing. When things get tough, they haven’t allowed the word of God to grow deep and they quickly dry up and wither on the vine.

Other times God’s word is planted in thorny soil. The weeds of prosperity, pleasure and the worries of life come and choke the word. The pursuit of pleasure and things keeps the word from maturing, as it should. It stunts the growth and we prove to be unproductive in our faith.

But thankfully for others, God’s word takes root in good soil that represents “those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop” (15).

Don’t allow God’s word to be stolen from you. Don’t allow times of testing to choke out the word. Don’t allow the pursuit of pleasure or wealth or the worries of this life keep you from being productive. Open up your heart to God: hear, retain and persevere in obedience to produce an abundant crop.

Dear Heavenly Father, may your word sprout and bring forth fruit in my life. Help me to tend to my heart that your word will not be stolen by the evil one, or wither in times of testing or be choked out by the prosperity, pleasures and concerns of this life. I long to be fruitful, to bear much fruit. So by your grace and in the power of your Spirit, help me to grow and be fruitful. In Jesus name, Amen.

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About pastorjeffsneighborhood

Born and raised in Minnesota, I have served in churches in Minnesota, Ohio, Oregon and California. I am a graduate of Crown College (MN) and George Fox Evangelical Seminary (OR). I have also done additional graduate studies in New Testament Studies at the Center for Advanced Theological Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary (CA). I am also a graduate of the College of Prayer. Having served as the Academic Dean and Program Director at Horizon Institute of Los Angeles for several years, I have returned to the pastorate and serve as Pastor of Big Trees Community Bible Church in Arnold, CA.
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