I recently read the book “Crazy Love” by Francis Chan. It had several interesting perspectives on Biblical truth. One, which I felt it was so good, that I wanted to share with everyone. I’ll just quote Francis Chan:
In the parable of the sower, Jesus explained that the seed is the truth (the Word of God). When the seed is flung onto the path, it is heard but quickly stolen away. When the seed is tossed onto the rocks, no roots take hold; there is an appearance of depth and growth because of the good soil, but it is only surface level. When the seed is spread among the thorns, it is received but soon suffocated by life’s worries, riches, and pleasures. But when the seed is sown in good soil, it grows, takes root, and produces fruit.
My caution is this: Do not assume you are good soil.
I think most American [or any nationally for that matter-steve] church goers are the soil that chokes the seed because of all the thorns. Thorns are anything that distracts us from God. When we want God and a bunch of other stuff, then that means we have thorns in our soil. A relationship with God simply cannot grow when money, sins, activities, favorite sports teams, addictions, or commitments are piled on top of it.
Most of us have too much in our lives. As David Goetz writes, “Too much of the good life ends of being toxic, deforming us spiritually.” [David Goetz, Death by Suburb, 2007] A lot of things are good by themselves, but all of it together keeps us from living healthy, fruitful lives for God.
I will say it again: Do not assume you are good soil.
Has your relationship with God actually changed the way you live? Do you see evidence of God’s kingdom in your life? Or are you choking it out slowly by spending too much time, energy, money and thought of the things of this world?
Are you satisfied being “godly enough” to get yourself to heaven, or to look good in comparison to others? Or can you say with Paul that you “want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him is his death” (Philippians 3:10)?
Instead of looking at the “rich family” in the church, or that “Football addict” that you know who is a deacon, try looking at yourself. How is your relationship with God? Do you see miracles in your life? Do you see a life transformed by the Gospel? Or do you see a life which is mediocre and lacking spiritual vitality? Maybe time to consider what thorns are choking out the seed. It’s time to clean house! The significance of cleaning the house, is not just to have a better week, but for your eternal destiny. Your “house cleaning” will affect eternity, your relationship with God; and your everyday life. I think the word from Francis Chan is perfectly suited for Christians in Cambodia and Christians in America. Sure they have different kinds of thorns, but they both need weeding!
Excerpt from: “Crazy Love” by Francis Chan, David C. Cook, Colorado Springs, CO: 2008.