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"The Sower" print by IC Illustrations

Today: Psalms 38:13-22; Luke 8:1-18; Numbers 27:12-23; Numbers 28; Numbers 29:1-11

Luke 8 – Parable of the Sower

Jesus described four different types of soil in His Parable of the Sower:

  1. Hard (beside the road)
  2. Rocky
  3. Thorny
  4. Good

I am a gardener and I have much experience with all four kinds of soil. The ground around our property is mostly hard, rocky clay. It must be laboriously sifted and cut with mulch. The rocks must be painstakingly removed by hand and nutrients need to be added to the soil in order for it to produce crops.

Our woods are filled with blackberry thickets. They are called “thickets” for a reason… they grow so densely that all other plants are choked out. We have cleared many of these thickets from our property. The long thorny branches are treacherous. They wrap themselves around your body and painfully dig into your flesh.¬†They can’t be safely cleared with power trimmers because the dangerous branches whip around and slash at your skin. They must be tediously cut down by hand.

The only kind of soil that doesn’t just occur naturally is the good ground. Good dirt doesn’t just happen. It has to be made with hard work — sifting, mulching, softening, adding.

We are that soil in Jesus’ parable. It doesn’t take any work to be the bad ground. Being pulled along by our untrustworthy emotions and our wicked culture is so easy. We have to WORK to become good soil, investing our time and soul into our relationship with God. But it is so worth the trouble! Nothing makes me happier than walking through my healthy garden bursting with delicious food. When we do the work to become good soil, our spiritual gardens are filled with fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, self control… the most wonderful harvest indeed!

"Moses on the Mountain of Nebo Looks at the Promised Land Before His Death" print by Jacob Steinhardt

Numbers 27

How my heart aches for Moses that he was not able to enter the promised land. But he accepted God’s punishment without complaint. His only request was that God would appoint a good leader to shepherd the people.

God, please give me a Moses heart! Please give me Moses’ compassionate heart, a heart that loves and follows You, no matter what struggles life may bring. If I have found favor in Your sight, LORD, show me now your ways, that I might know You and find favor in Your sight! AMEN!