Stacy's Articles

How's Your Soil March 2014


I am currently reading a bookon farming, well, not really farming, it is on church growth, but it is allabout figuring out the health of the church by testing the soil. This book, “DirtMatters” was written by Jim Powell a minister in Peoria, and focuses on thesoil type of the church we minister in. It is based on Matthew 13:1-23, Jesus’parable of the Sower, which is more about the soil than it is the seed or theSower.

            ““Listen then to what the parable of the sower means:When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, theevil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is the seedsown along the path. The one who received the seed that fell on rockyplaces is the man who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. Butsince he has no root, he lasts only a short time. When trouble or persecutioncomes because of the word, he quickly falls away. The one who received the seedthat fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but theworries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making itunfruitful. But the one who received the seed that fell on good soil isthe man who hears the word and understands it. He produces a crop, yielding ahundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.”” (Matthew 13:18–23, NIV84)

 How’s your soil, what is it producing? I knowthe seed has been sown in your heart, but is your heart allowing it to producea crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown? You see, thehealth of your heart is up to you, it is you alone that can make sure your soilis healthy. It will take faith, and like farming, it will take work, you willneed to work the soil in order to get a good harvest. You alone are responsiblefor studying God’s Word, for praying, for trusting Christ more and more eachday. And yet, you are not alone because Christ has given you His Holy Spirit tohelp you and He has given you His family, His body, the church to help you, ifyou will reach out and ask for help.

So, how is your soil? Do youhave good soil, thorny soil, rocky soil or a hardened pathway?

My personal prayer forSaybrook is for the soil to get healthier so that we can produce an incrediblecrop for our Lord and Savior! I pray this is your prayer as well.

      I keep asking thatthe God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spiritof wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray also that theeyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope towhich he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints,…”(Ephesians 1:17–18, NIV84)