Day 7 | 40 days Through Mark

Day 7 | March 9 | Mark 4:1-20
By: Ron Swartzell

As most of us know, without a good soil base, you will have trouble reaping a good harvest. Soil is the foundation of gardening.

In a past home, I had a patch in the front yard, close to the house, that I could not get grass to grow on. Try as I may, buying good seed, watering, putting down straw over the seed, still nothing would grow. After several frustrating attempts, I was convinced that when builders put down the original sod, they put it either over concrete or discarded housing materials. I just gave in and accepted that grass was never going to grow in that part of the yard. It did not have the capacity to accept seed.

To contrast with that soil story, when the horse farm at 143rd and Pflumm was beginning to develop into the present subdivision, you could drive past the mounds of excavated dirt and see that they were black and rich. You could only imagine the future flower beds of those homeowners. That soil was nourished for several years and the outcome was obvious in the transformation of the usual clay ground of Olathe.

Mark 4:1-20 is a story of four different types of soil. The soil represents the Kingdom’s message. The four soil types represent how our hearts can react to the “seed” of God’s message.  
The first soil represents a hard and dry soil. It is just not interested nor willing to accept any seed.

The second soil represents a shallow and rocky soil. It has no sure footage for the roots so the growth is short lived.

The third soil represents thorny soil. It has hopes to succeed, but is soon overtaken by undesirable distractions.

The fourth soil represents the rich soil. Is has been nurtured and cultivated over time in order to produce a bountiful crop.

Whether we are new Christians or lifelong Christians, we can use this parable to recognize how important it is to keep our hearts prepared for new growth. Like the good soil in the Scripture reading and the soil at 143rd and Pflumm, this soil does not stay rich and bountiful without constant care. We need to keep a watchful eye on the soil of our hearts. We need to take the time to nourish our hearts and minds with daily conversation with God and God’s word. To keep our hearts as good soil, we must constantly yearn for new growth.
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John Pickens - March 9th, 2022 at 6:48am

Good reminder! Thank you, Ron.

Ron spruill - March 9th, 2022 at 7:00am

Good words my friend!

Gordon Wetmore Jr - March 9th, 2022 at 9:26am

Thank you for the reminder to nurture and cultivate the soil. I appreciate your sharing.

Amy Wetmore - March 9th, 2022 at 11:46am

Love it, Ron! Got a spot in my yard with bad soil! I love that about Gods word… we can all relate!

Christi Ledo - March 12th, 2022 at 12:37am

Beautiful illustration, Ron! Thank you!