The other night I was listening to a speaker talk about organic farming with my husband. Often these messages leave me feeling like I'm in chemistry class and typically they go over my head. I can pick rock and pull weeds, but when it comes to the science of farming, count me out.
Though I don't understand this aspect of our way of life, I do greatly appreciate the lessons God teaches us as we work the land. When this speaker said, "Feed the Soil," and then went on to explain why and how I didn't think about the dirt in our fields, but instead my mind focused on the soil of my heart. And friend, there are some similarities.
As a farmer's wife, I've never given much attention to feeding the soil. I know my husband tills the soil, cares for the plant and works hard to remove weeds, but feeding the soil presented a new idea. This speaker talked thoroughly about nutrients the soil needs, the impact they have and important role they play in the crop that is harvested. The condition of the soil directly effects the harvest that is produced.
Do you think we can say the same about the soil of our heart? I think so, but the Bible tells us so. The Parable of the Sower clearly talks about different soil types. In Matthew, we read about soil by the road, soil that is rocky, thorny and good. Each soil type impacts the plant that grows and fruit that's harvested. This is true but there's more.
An experienced farmer is not going to plant their crop in bad soil...they know not to put seed in the ground if it's rocky or full of weeds. As believers when we are aware of weeds, we pull them out. If we see a rock of sin in our heart, we remove it. We know our faith will grow when our soil is good, but like a farmer can we make it better?
When my husband started farming organically, this was a more challenging question, but through the years he's learned and discovered ways to feed the soil. He's improved the condition of our soil which has resulted in increased production for our crops. What if you and I take the time to learn about and work on the soil of our heart?
I'll be honest, I don't have all the answers, but that's Ok because I can remind you to go to the One who has all the answers. God created the soil of our hearts and plants the seeds into it; He has the answers and is willing to give us the wisdom and equip us for the work. My husband learns from speakers and reads books to gain information, you and I can learn from the Lord and read His Word.
A few verses..."Sow righteousness for yourselves, reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the LORD, until he comes and showers his righteousness on you." (Hosea 10:12) Friend, before we can feed the soil, we need to care for the soil. Is your heart hard? How can you break up your unplowed ground?
"Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm." (Proverbs 13:20) A farmer can use tools and nutrients to feed the soil of his fields, fellowshipping and learning from fellow believers can impact the soil of our hearts. Who is influencing you? Do the people you share with, books you read, movies you watch and sites you visit fill you up or leave you empty? Do they build your faith or push you away from the Lord?
"My food," said Jesus, "is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work." (John 4:34) We can't specifically say Jesus was referring to feeding the soil of his heart, but I believe our obedience today impacts the condition of our heart for tomorrow. Are you obeying the Lord? How does your obedience impact your faith and relationship with Christ? Do you think obedience is linked to your prayer life, worship and time in the Word?
These are a few of my initial thoughts and I'd love to hear yours on how to feed the soil, so please feel free to leave a comment. Farmers never stop learning and they are constantly sharing with one another, don't you think we should do the same as believers?
Dear Heavenly Father, Lord thank you for how you created us. Each and every part. You've created the world around us and have lessons for us to learn. Thank you for this lesson from the farm. Help me feed the soil of my heart. Show me how and then give me the diligence to do the work that it requires. Plant the seed, water it and make it grow. May the harvest be plentiful. In Jesus' Name, Amen.