By Mary Spence
"Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. Whoever has ears, let them hear.”
In the parables Jesus teaches about seeds and relates the soil of our heart.
He tells us that some seeds are cast on rocky hard soil. The hard soil gets that way through years of sitting in the baking sun, it is filled with rock. Much like a heart that has endured years of harsh treatment, hard times and drought. It has been walked on and trampled; years of lacking and lovelessness. No one has cared for this soil in a very long time.
The soil filled with thorns and brambles is like a heart that has had to defend itself against attack. Cruel words and actions have produced defensive, angry responses. No one wants to go into this thorny briar patch. It could result in bruising and bleeding. There might even be even ticks in this territory. Not merely hardened, this heart seeks to defend itself always, even when it is not truly under attack. A percieved attack will result in an angry, hurtful response. This soil produces injury to those who love it.
However some hearts are well cared for soil. Watered regularly with the word. Warm from the glow of a living relationship with the Lord. Lovingly fertilized and tilled. The weeds removed and cast away.
Here is the good news: there is hope! Hope for the hard soil, the thorny briar patch too.
For the hardened rocky heart; the word of the Lord is Iike water for the thirsty ground. The tender care He has for us is medicine for that hard unloved heart. If you can let Him in, He can heal those hurts, fill the empty spaces and till the old injuries in to bring forth soft good soil buried deep down in that heart.
For in the thorny briar patch heart, there is a love that does not depend on you or your actions. He loves you right where you are, in that tangled up briar patch. With a love that you can't earn, love that doesn't injure or wound when you least expect it. Unlike the relationships you have known in your past, it is gentle, kind and unending. It is a love that you may not have experienced before and may not understand. He truly wants His best for you. Unlike human love you may have experienced in the past, this love is for you as He created you. Not for when you measure up or meet some out of reach standard of goodness, but right now, right here. Just as you are.
He loves all of us, even the ones who don't yet know Him. No matter where you have been or who you have been there is a place for you at His table. He will not let you go.