The parable of the sower tells us about four types of people and the conditions of a heart when people hear the Word of God.
- on the path or by the wayside
- stony ground
- thorny ground
- good ground
The parable of the sower also shows how these four types of people receive the Word of God.
- on the path — they do not receive the Word because satan snatches the Word immediately
- on stony ground — they receive the Word with joy and endure for a while, but stumble when persecution arises for the Word’s sake
- on thorny ground — the Word is choked by worldly cares, the deceitfulness of riches, and the lust of the heart for other things
- on good ground — they hear the Word, accept it, and bear fruit in degree… 30fold, 60fold, and 100fold.
The parables are full of wisdom for us, regardless of our stage life. Usually, I focus on my heart’s ability to receive, accept and bear the fruit of the Word. Yesterday I was challenged by a teaching on the root. The root is mentioned in connection with the stony ground and is our hidden life and growth in the Lord.
The preacher posed a question. When people meet us, do they know what we are all about in two minutes?!
Roots grow when we allow the Lord to take His Word into our hidden parts, into our character even, to help us stand when our beliefs are tested. People with stony ground hearts “enjoy” the Word, and accept it with joy. It is during the testing where the stony ground people falter.
Our beliefs stay on the testing ground. They will be tried. Add the Word of God, and then trouble or tribulation or persecution arises for the Word’s sake. This suggests that in our receiving of the Word we make personal changes toward obedience and alignment that provoke opposition. Yet, if our hearts are stony ground, we stumble. We lose our footing. We lack the root necessary to make a firm stand for the beliefs that are changing us into the image of Christ.
Lord, we want to be rooted in You. We want roots in Your Word. We want standing power against tribulation and persecution when the time comes. We want to stay rooted in the Word. We do not want to stumble because we believe the Word.
Look at these trees and consider, WHAT IS A TREE WITHOUT ROOTS? It’s like the Charlie Brown tree that has no branches. A tree without roots is flimsy and weak. A tree without roots may have the looks but no stamina or power to withstand the elements. A tree without roots is a fallen tree.
Look at these trees. They are a just a visual of how many roots can form in one tree. Consider the years it took for these trees to grow, and grow strong. Why do we fall into trapped thinking that says our discipleship in the Lord should be overnight and without testing or injury?
I encourage us to live daily with God’s Word and determine not to stumble when our growing faith comes under trial or fire. In relationships, let’s be deeper people… people who need to be known over time and cannot be figured out on the surface. Let’s be people who allow the Word of God to change us, and strengthen us to stand in faith. Let’s be rooted in the faith, and in our daily discipleship.
I am still meditating, but want to pass on the idea to provoke us all toward the rooted life in Christ. Selah, and love to all.