Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.
In the Bible Jesus tells a story about a gardener planting seeds in different kinds of soil. There is the soil by the side of road, the rocky soil, the thorny soil, and the good soil. If you know anything at all about gardening, then you know that the soil you plant seed in needs to be well toiled with good fertilizer so it is rich and nourishing to the seeds. This rich soil is also nourishing to weeds, and it takes a lot of work to keep the garden maintained. In our lives, the soil represents our hearts. Just as the gardener is responsible for keeping up with her garden, we too are respondible for our hearts.
So, what do each of these soils look like you may be asking? Lets take a look at the soil by the side of the road. This soil is hard and packed down; it has a crusty surface with weeds popping up all about. When our hearts have by the side of the road soil, we too have become packed down with the busyness of life. We may quickly pour in God's Word in the morning, but by the time we have walked out the door for work, we have forgotton all that we read. The seeds we continually plant inside our heart have nowhere to root because the soil is too hard due to the continual stimulation. When the seeds we try to plant do not have a deep root system; it is easier for the enemy to steal them away from us. He will tempt you with lies in hopes of replacing the truth of God's Word.
If you find that you are immersed with God's Word, yet nothing is rooted, you may have a heart with soil by the side of the road.
If you find that you forget what you read in God's Word as soon as you closed the Good Book, then you may have a heart with soil by the side of the road.
If you find that it is a challenge to hold on to love, peace, hope, self control, etc then you may have a heart with soil by the side of the road.
If these things are true for you, ask your Father to cultivate the soil of your heart. He will help you. Your heart does not have to stay on the side of the road, for Jesus is here to lead you elsewhere.
Next week, we will discuss the soil with rocks.
Sources: Havilah Cunnington/Radical Growth