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The key to spiritual growth: know your soil type Matthew 13
Matthew Chapter 13
In Matthew Chapter 13:1-23 Jesus lays out a parable known as The Parable of the Sower. If you are not familiar with the story. A farmer goes out to scatter some seeds for planting. As he does so his seed falls on four types of soil, hard, rocky, thorny and good soil. Each type of soil pertains to the condition of our hearts in relation to how we receive the Word of God.
I have read this parable a number of times but never equated it to anything but the condition of a person's heart in relation to being receptive to God's Word. I don't know why but the other day when I was reading the parable again I thought about how the parable also relates to our friendships.
The Hard Soil
Any farmer knows that in order to plant a good crop the soil must be aerated and loose to allow the seeds to be covered by the dirt. Seeds thrown on the hard earth will only sit there and eventually will be eaten by bird or scorched by the sun.
The hard soil in the Parable of the Sower refers to people who have hard hearts so are not receptive to God's calling. A friend with a hard heart wants to be in control of the relationship. Their mind is closed to advice or suggestions from other friends
The Rocky Soil
The rocky soil pertains to people who hear God's word but when other people call them out on it they turn their backs on God and walk away. Rocky friends, are friends who like you in the moment but when certain other friends are around they ignore you. The reasons may vary. Their other friends may not like you or see you as not worthy of their time.
The thorny soil refers to people who hear God's Word but the cares and the worries like weeds overcome any type of growth. Thorny friends are superficial friends who allow petty things to come between them and their friendships. Thorny friends do not forget transgressions in fact they will remind their friends over and over again how they've been wronged. Thorny friends usually see nothing wrong with what they are doing.
The Good Soil
The good soil represents those who hear the Word of God and receive it gladly into their hearts. Once in their hearts the Word of God dictates their hearts. Good friends are just that, good friends no matter what happens. Good friends may argue with each other but they do not let it come between their friendship.
As you take the time to review the four soils think about your current and former friendships. Do they fall under any of the first three types of friendships because of the way you treat your friends? If you find you are not being a good friend then the time is now to change. If you have friends who treat you as anything less then a good friend then remember to take the time to be a good friend to them. If you like you could sit down and talk to them about the way they are treating you. But proceed with caution or your friend may feel you are being inconsiderate of their feelings.