Tuesday 20 September 2016

by Daniel Stocky

Mark 4:8  » … other (seeds) fell on good ground, and did yield fruit that sprang up and increased; and brought forth, some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred. »

We are on the way to see greater things in our lives, and we desire that our lives will increasingly continue to bear good fruit.

This text is to make us more sensitive to the fact that the state of our heart has a direct impact on the quantity of fruit our lives will produce. In this parable, Jesus encourages us saying that if our heart is like good soil, we have the certainty that we will produce good fruit.

In the time of Jesus a normal yield would be 10 to 1. Generally each sower would expect for every seed sown to reap around 10; more would have been considered exceptional. Jesus says here that for 1 the sower will reap 30, 60 or 100 fold, therefore at the very least, far more than the average yield.

Jesus has more for me than just the average. Let us not be Christians who accept the ordinary, the average, but let us expect that above average becomes our norm.

This surely can encourage me, as I work on my heart, to put into practice the Word of God as it will naturally yield abundant fruit, 30, 60 even 100 fold: values that are way above what I could ever achieve myself.

Jesus evokes here 3 situations which can hinder us from bearing good fruit: hard soil, weeds, and stones; but he could have made a much longer list by adding rodents, very heavy rainfall from a storm which floods fields, or even drought. Nevertheless, despite all the things that can ruin a harvest, there is only one condition needed for bearing good fruit: an open heart to receive the Word of God.

Today, let’s examine the soil of our hearts. Are our hearts open and receptive to the Word of God?  Are we willing to embrace His instructions, even if that means disturbing our habits, our reasoning and our personal expectations?  Have we brought our will into complete submission and compliance to what God has spoken to us through the Bible?  Is my life entirely the property of the sower, or are there parts of the garden where the seed will never grow?

Each year, every farmer will prepare and plough the field in advance before sowing. When a farmer wants to expand and enlarge his fields, he will have to work hard to break up ground that is fallow.  Are we aware of what Jesus is doing in our lives for us to be able to receive new seed? Do you see new areas of understanding of Scripture, or are there new areas of your behavior that God has targeted for change?  All of this is part of the enlarging process.

One of the best ways to prepare the soil of our heart for receiving the new seed is to thank God for what He has already done in our lives.  So, I encourage you today to thank Him for specific things He has already done to change you and increase you.  Then ask Him not only to take out the rocks, the thorns, and all of the rest that can hinder growth, but also ask him to open new fields of sowing in your life.

If our Lord, the Great Sower, has made the decision to come sow in my heart, it is because He is certain that the field that I am will bear good fruit. He objective for my life is to make me significantly above average. Let us receive an open and supple heart. And God will take us to a place of enlargement we never thought possible.

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