In Mark 4:1-9 Jesus tells the parable, or story, of the seeds and soil to describe the Kingdom of God breaking into our lives. I hope you go back and read it or listen to it. You can also watch this awesome & brief VIDEO to learn more of why Jesus used parables to teach.
As we get into the story, let’s be clear about a few things:
Jesus is the farmer. We are not. And His seeds are grade A. They are perfect. These seeds are of the abundant life God wants for us (John 10:10), and He desires everyone would get in on what God is doing— Jesus does not want anyone to miss out (John 3:16)!
The tension in the story is not with the farmer or the seeds, but the soil.
The soil where the abundant-life-seeds are being planted is our life— our work life, play life, quiet life; our thoughts, feelings, and brokenness; our past, present, and future experiences; our relationship angst & health with others through work, school, social media, church, and neighbors— so absolutely all the things we are part of.
The first soil (our life) Jesus describes is hardened by life. The seed of abundant life is unable to penetrate the surface that has sometimes taken years to become like a roof shingle.
The second soil (our life) Jesus describes is rocky and shallow. The seed of abundant life grows for a little bit with enthusiasm, then dies out because we move onto the next thing and the next thing and the next thing, like a hummingbird, never giving time for the seed to germinate.
The third soil (our life) Jesus describes is full of weeds. The seed of abundant life is choked out by our worry and/or our “busy-ness.” The seed of abundant life grows into a stunted or diseased plant because of everything it has to fight through to get below the surface.
The fourth soil (our life) Jesus describes has been cultivated, weeded, watered, given proper nutrients, and watched over. The seed of abundant life grows and bears fruit that the farmer (Jesus) is proud of, benefits others who will delight in the abundance of the crop, and gives the soil purpose.
How do we cultivate our soil (our life) if we are like a roof shingle, hummingbird, or really like being busy? We play a part, but only in response to what the main soil conservationist (Holy Spirit) is doing.
The Holy Spirit will always point you to Jesus (John 16:13-14).
The Holy Spirit will pray for you when you can’t pray yourself (Romans 8:26-27).
The Holy Spirit will begin to turn over the soil (it will probably be painful) (Romans 7:14-25).
The Holy Spirit will bring fruit – but it takes time (Galatians 5:13-26).
So, are you ready to join in on what the farmer (Jesus) and the main soil conservationist (Holy Spirit) want for you?
In simple humility, let our gardener, God, landscape you with the Word, making a salvation-garden of your life (James 1:21, The Message).
Begin with this prayer: Jesus, I belong to you. Then pray it again. And again, And again. Then, reach out and invite me to drink coffee or break bread with you. I would love to visit about what could be next!
I am currently going through a 5-day devo called “The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry” on the YouVersion Bible App. Will you go through it with me? Look for wade610 and friend request me.
As you read the below scriptures from Sunday, ask God to elevate something from the page — a phrase, a word, an image, and sit with it in quiet conversation with your Father who loves you. Pray “come, Holy Spirit!”
Mark 4:1-9 | Luke 9:35 | Galatians 5:22-23
1 – See the Sunday sermon reminder Pastor Wade has provided for us above. What comes to mind as you read and remember? Thoughts? Images? Questions? Did you know that God is BIG enough for all of that? Offer your reflections to the Lord in prayer.
2 – Pray through the scriptures listed above and as you do, breathe deeply and listen. What do you hear? What kind of soil is the good seed of Christ Jesus falling on in your heart, mind, life, family…?
3 – Pastor Wade said, “if you plant tomatoes, you get tomatoes. But what if you plant nothing? If you plant nothing, you don’t get ‘nothing.’ You get weeds.” How is the Lord speaking to you as you reflect on what you might be allowing or not allowing Jesus to plant, cultivate, nurture and flourish in you?
4 – “I want Jesus to save me, but not to sanctify me.” Ouch. How did this hit you when you heard Pastor Wade say it? Did it resonate? Did it bring someone or something to mind? How is the Holy Spirit calling you to respond today? Pray for Jesus to reveal to you the state (the soil) of your heart and then pray for Him to reveal a response, a next step to you. May we all have the faith, the confidence in Him, to take the next step. Come, Holy Spirit!
Need someone to pray with you? Your Pastors and our Anchor Prayer Warriors are here for you. For prayer or care concerns call or text Pastor Christy at 817-944-9345 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
At Anchor Fellowship, we believe that we are called to SHAKE THE GATES OF HELL SO THAT HEAVEN REJOICES AND LIVES ARE CHANGED!