The Soil of Your Soul

Article by Dr. Les Hollon, Pastor, Trinity Baptist Church

 

Jesus’ teachings are a blueprint for how to live in the 21st century.  His use of stories as parables show us God’s best for:  family life, prayer, work, friendship, private & personal time, living by what’s most important, releasing our talents, worship, being young, growing wise, getting along with difficult people, sexual integrity & joy, retirement, recovering from failure, Bible study, character formation, making a better world, being ready for eternity, living in a sinful world, money management, and…

 

Parable means “something cast alongside.”  Alongside his other teaching & actions, Jesus cast images in story form … which is the only way some of life can be understood.  How is your life best understood as a parable?  Jesus’ major message, the Kingdom of God, is perfectly established in heaven and is at work on earth wherever and whenever the will of God is applied. 

 

The Kingdom is wide open for seekers to enter by becoming believers, and believers to dwell as disciples.  Where are you in God’s Kingdom?

 

The listener has to pay close attention or the meaning cannot be grasped.  The audience to the Sower & the Soils parable then and now has to think about personal application or we will miss Jesus’ promise.  Our ears need to be hearing so we can understand and our eyes seeing so we can perceive (Matthew 13:9, 14 – 15, 51).  Parables begin, as Joachim Jeremias and others have said … as windows through which to see the larger world more clearly, and then become a mirror by which we see ourselves most accurately.  This is clearly experienced as we are taken in by the Sower & Soils parable.  Jesus first told the parable (13:3-9) and then explained the parable’s meaning (Matthew 13:18-23).

 

Our souls can be understood as the soil of our lives.  Soil well cared for will yield much joy.  Soil stressed out and not cared for will produce little sustained joy. The Saviour redeems and renews the soil of our soul.  We then are responsible to let Christ “be more and more at home in our hearts as we trust in Him.

 

May our roots go down deep into the soil of God’s marvelous love.” (Adapted from NLT, Eph. 3:17).

 

God’s best, known as God’s will, is equally sown for each of us.  We have four important responsibilities:

 

The importance of understanding – by not allowing life events to harden our lives which then enables the Evil One to walk all over us like a beaten path;

 

The importance of letting our roots grow deeply & broadly – by allowing God’s goodness to be our sustainable source for joy in life;

 

The importance of connecting into God’s wealth for life plan - by trusting God’s presence so we will not be deceived by false wealth which only turns our lives in to thorny worries;

 

The importance of good soil becoming our character – from which God will produce sustainable and in certain life seasons – amazing harvests of happiness.

 

God’s best is at work in our midst.  Let’s help enrich the soulful soil of others by not walking on them, not throwing rocks on their joy, and not casting worries on their concerns.

 

Instead, “through the soil of God’s marvelous love” let’s help soften their lives, lift their burdens, remove the anxious roots of their thorns and produce heavenly harvests from our shared earthly lives.

 

Following the Shepherd with you,

Pastor Les

 

“If thou shouldst never see my face again,
Pray for my soul. More things are wrought by prayer
Than this world dreams of.”
-Alfred Lord Tennyson

 

“Our souls are not hungry for fame, comfort, wealth or power.  Those rewards create almost as many problems as they solve.  Our souls are hungry for meaning, for the sense that we have figured out how to live so that our lives matter, so that the world will be at least a little bit different for our having passed through it.”
-Rabbi Harold Kushner

 

This article was written by Les Hollon, Pastor of Trinity Baptist Church.  For more information about how God works in your life, or to contact Dr. Hollon, click over to Trinity Baptist Church.

 

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Posted on 4 July, 2009 in Happiness, Spirituality
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