Welcome to the God Centred Meditation Blog. I’m Leah Bulfin and this week I’m writing to you from a retreat centre just out of Sydney where I’ve come away for the weekend to spend some time with God.
It’s something I highly recommend that everyone does from time-to-time whether it’s for a few hours or a day or a weekend – getting away and spending some time with God does wonders for your soul.
This week I want to share with anyone who is feeling particularly stressed at the moment. You feel like you’re striving and you’re tired but you’re just not getting anywhere. You’re working really hard; you’re putting in a lot of effort but you’re just not seeing the results in what you’re doing.
You probably wish that you were more like the person that Jesus talks about in Mark chapter 4 verse 20 where He says “the farmer sowed some seed that fell on good soil and it grew and produced a crop some multiplying 30, some 60 and some 100 times more than what was sown”.
This would be wonderful if our lives looked like this – if we found that instead of striving and working so hard and being stressed and tired we were able to sow and see the results of our efforts return 30, 60 and 100 times more that we sow.
Whenever I’ve read this scripture in the past, I have very quickly skipped over the parts where Jesus talks about all the other types of soil; He talks about the rocky soil and the shallow soil and He talks about the soil filled with weeds so that when the seed grows the weeds choke out the healthy plants.
I always quickly read over that bit and automatically put myself in the category of the “good soil”. I figure “I must be good soil because after-all I’m a Christian so I couldn’t possibly be any of the other types of soil”.
But what I realised is that the type of soil in this scripture is not a reflection of who we are as a person; whether we’re a good person or a bad person.
This scripture is a description of the condition of our heart. And all of us go through times and seasons where the weeds and the rubbish of life gets in and the soil has become worn down and unhealthy.
We might become like the soil that’s trampled down – you know, nothing can grow in compacted soil. Or maybe the depth of what we have to give has become shallow because we have given out so much of ourselves.
And this is what I’ve realised – in the past I have spent so much of my efforts on striving to produce a crop but what this scripture shows us is that instead working hard to produce the crop we need to work hard at keeping the soil of our heart healthy. Healthy soil produces the crop.
When the seed falls on good soil – healthy soil, it will produce a crop without our striving to make it happen. It will produce a crop 30, 60 and even 100 times more than what we’ve sown.
The most important thing is the condition of the soil.
I looked at the description of what is considered to be good soil – good soil is soft, it’s deep and it’s clean.
This really spoke to me about making sure my focus is on keeping the soil of my heart soft, deep and clean from all the weeds, rocks, toxins and rubbish of life, rather than focussing on trying to produce a crop in my own efforts.
In our efforts and our striving to do the things in life we have to do – the work we do, our relationships, the things we’re called to do, our ministry – whatever it is – it could be any area of our life, often times our focus is on producing the crop and we strive and we work so hard.
But what I’ve learnt from this verse is that our focus and our energies need to be on keeping the soil of our heart healthy. It takes a lot of weeding out the weeds and the rubbish; keeping it healthy; keeping the nutrients in so that we stay healthy and rested.
And of course we can do that through meditating on God; getting away and spending time with God where we make space for Him to do the work in our heart. Where He can refill us with the nutrients and the health that we need. He replenishes the soil that’s been washed away by the demands of life. Where He rests our spirit and heals us. Where we’ve been trampled down, He restores and re-strengthens us.
When we work on keeping the soil of our heart healthy rather than producing the crop and then the seed falls on that good soil of the heart it supernaturally – it’s how God works – will produce 30, 60 and 100 times more than what we’ve sown, more than the effort we put in when our focus is on keeping our heart – the soil of our heart – healthy.
But if we find ourselves in that place where we are struggling and striving and producing nothing that’s when we especially need to stop and take time and concentrate on getting the soil of our heart healthy; when we need to spend time with God to rest and restore the soil of our heart.
I pray this helps, inspires and encourages you. I pray that you are able to find some time to get away with God this week. I know it’s really helped me a lot this weekend as I’ve got away with God and spent time with Him to re-focus, re-centre and remember that’s it’s really all about the work of the heart.
God bless, have a wonderful week! Looking forward to seeing you again next week.