Thursday, November 30, 2006

My Quiet Time

Whenever I have read the parable of the sower(Mark 4) in the past, I have always looked at it in the context of a Christian spreading the gospel and the reasons why some people accept it and some don't. It was recently pointed out to me that (verse 14) what is being spread is "the Word" and not simply "the gospel". For me this brings some things to light that go along with the lessons God has been teaching me about my mind and taking my thoughts captive.

Obviously when you compare the four scenarios of the seed being sown and the growth that it yields (or lack of growth), most people would like to think they are in the fourth group because this is where the seed is sown and it yields an abundant harvest of fruit. There are many times when I know that God is speaking something to my heart but it fails to impact my life in a way that brings change or growth and verse 20 gives me some insight into why this occurs. When the seed is sown on "good ground", the word is heard and accepted. Now I don't think that I lack in the area of acceptance as much as I lack in the area of hearing. My failure to yield fruit comes from my failure to allow God's word to become part of me and make an impact on my life.

I am a quick-fix type of person. I can recoginize a problem fairly easily and I am able to make a plan to solve it, but often this leads to only temporary results. For long-lasting, God-inspired results, I need to meditate on and ponder the things that God speaks to me. This is what begins the work of a changed heart. The problem? Meditation and pondering take time and effort, two things that I struggle with expending. I would have to focus on what I am thinking about, what I need to change and God's instructions on how to do just that. Now if you are anything like me, I find this to be a lot of work! Technically I am meditating and pondering all day long. Things to do, places I would like to go, things in my life that I would like to change, books I am reading, arguments with my husband (I am really good at pondering this!), topics to blog about, struggles with my kids, money situations, etc., etc., etc., fill my mind continously throughout my day. My thoughts are non-stop.

Mark 4 reminds me that if I want to be in the fourth group I need to make my mind fertile ground to recieve God's word. This requires me to meditate and ponder the things that God speaks to me until they become a part of me, and this is what leads to a fruitful life. Since I know that God will not give me a "magic pill" that shuts off my wayward thoughts, I need to be diligent in thinking about the right things--the things God has spoken to me, the things that bring peace to my heart and to my life.