Monday, July 4, 2011

Monday Musings: Good Soil

Text for this week:  Isaiah 55:10-13; Psalm 65: 9-13; Romans 8:1-11, Matthew 13: 1-9, 18-23

A Farmer went out to plant…

We’ve all heard this parable time and time again.  We know that the Farmer is God, or Jesus, or both.  Jesus tells us that the seed is the Word of God, the good news of the kingdom of God. 

Often we wonder how we fit into this parable.  If we aren’t the seed or the sower, we must be the soil.

Well, you may be thinking, what kind of soil am I?  If I am not good soil, how can I change it?  We all want to be the good soil!

But you know, soil just is.  It can’t change itself.  It is what it is.  Unless someone comes in and loosens the hard path, it stays hard.  Unless someone carries off the rocks and adds loamy earth, the stony soil stays stony.  Unless someone pulls the weeds, they grow rampant.

I think Jesus knew something about humans.  He never challenges the disciples to ‘be good soil.’  Jesus knew that like the soil, we could not change themselves.  We need the Sower to work in our lives.   

Face it, we are all every type of soil at different times.  There are times when our hearts are hard and dry and the Word of Life just seems to sit there.  There are times when we are the rocky soil, eagerly grasping the life-giving Word but never letting it reach deep in us.  There are times, when the cares of the life, and the distractions of the world choke out God’s grace in our lives.  And then there are the times when our hearts are ready to hear God’s word and it grows deep in us, nourishing us and transforming our lives.
If we are the soil in this parable, then the good news is that Jesus has already made us good soil.  In our reading in Romans today, Paul tells us, “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”  Even in the dry times, in the rocky times, in the times when the world distracts us from God, we are still good soil, enriched by Jesus body and blood, watered by God’s ever-flowing mercy.

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