Read

“As for that in the good soil, they are those who, hearing the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patience.” (Luke 8:15)

Reflect

Returning from two weeks’ vacation, I discovered my garden in a state of utter disarray. My tomatoes were flopped to the side, too heavy to stand. My beets were so unruly they were tangled with my severely overgrown radishes. My cilantro had bolted, zucchinis were coming out my ears, and weeds were everywhere a weed could possibly grow – in only two weeks!

Too often, our hearts look like my garden: overgrown with distraction, spiritually unruly, too burdened with the cares of life to bear fruit. Left to ourselves, our hearts’ natural bent is one of fleshly desire. We cannot bear fruit on our own. When we neglect the Lord, we neglect our own spirituality. The weeds of sin and distraction threaten to choke out our view of God, and the longer we stay away from the Vine, the more our branches suffer (John 15).

It doesn’t take long sin to grow in a neglected heart. Christ offers the hope of a fruitful and worthwhile life, but we can only experience that abundance if we remain in relationship with Him on a daily – and even hourly basis.

Pray

Lord, show me where I have neglected You, and prune my heart that I may grow.

Your turn

What distractions do you need to remove in order to achieve spiritual growth?