November 26, 2008

Scattering and Gathering

Matthew 13:1-9

Some [seed] fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil.
Matthew 13:5


In some regions stones are a constant reminder that top soil rests on a rocky foundation. Farmers especially notice that stones seem to boil up out of the earth. Every year they have to pick up stones before the spring planting, but it’s not long before other stones take their place.

There was rocky ground in Palestine, where Jesus taught in parables. Those stories related to people’s daily lives. Jesus spoke of everyday life in the home and on the farm. But those simple stories had deep meaning. Jesus used those stories to help people see amazing things about new life in the kingdom of God.

In today’s verses, Jesus tells a story about scattering seed on different types of soil. But what was behind this story? Jesus explains that the seed is the Word of God, which is scattered everywhere. But the reception of that seed will differ as it falls into human hearts. When some people hear God’s Word, they reject it. Others receive it, but their hearts are rocky. There isn’t room for the seed to grow. The distractions of life choke out the sprouting seedlings. But others have truly receptive hearts, and the Word of God and his love grow deep within them, yielding a great harvest.

Take a soil sample today from your own heart. What kind of soil are you?

What kind of soil do you want to be?

Father, you have cast the Word of life into our lives. May it take root and grow as we serve you and help to build up your kingdom in this world. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

About the author — Harvey Brink

Rev. Harvey Brink has retired from active ministry in the Christian Reformed Church, having served congregations in Michigan, California, Iowa, New Jersey, Illinois, and
Washington. He and his wife Maxine live near their children and grandchildren in western Washington.

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