|Create Date||September 8, 2017|
|Last Updated||September 8, 2017|
For summary click on the title
Parable of the Sower
What does the Parable of the Sower tell us about our relationship to Christ and what do we do when the pressures of life make us discouraged.
Jesus: Once there was a sower who scattered seeds. 4 One day he walked in a field scattering seeds as he went. Some seeds fell beside a road, and a flock of birds came and ate all those seeds. 5 So the sower scattered seeds in a field, one with shallow soil and strewn with rocks. But the seeds grew quickly amid all the rocks, 6 without rooting themselves in the shallow soil. Their roots got tangled up in all the stones. The sun scorched these seeds, and they died. 7 And so the sower scattered seeds near a path, this one covered with thorny vines. The seeds fared no better there—the thorns choked them, and they died. 8 And so finally the sower scattered his seeds in a patch of good earth. At home in the good earth, the seeds grew and grew. Eventually the seeds bore fruit, and the fruit grew ripe and was harvested. The harvest was immense—30, 60, 100 times what was sown.
9 He who has ears to hear, let him hear.
18 This is what the parable of the sower means. 19 It is about the kingdom of heaven. When someone hears the story of the Kingdom and cannot understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away whatever goodness and holiness had been sown in the heart. This is like the seeds sown beside the road.
20-21 You know people who hear the word of God and receive it joyfully—but then, somehow, the word fails to take root in their hearts. It is temporary. As soon as there is trouble for those people, they trip: those people are the seeds strewn on the rocky soil. 22 And you know people who hear the word, but it is choked inside them because they constantly worry and prefer the wealth and pleasures of the world: they prefer drunken dinner parties to prayer, power to piety, and riches to righteousness. Those people are like the seeds sown among thorns. 23 The people who hear the word and receive it and grow in it—those are like the seeds sown on good soil. They produce a bumper crop, 30 or 60 or 100 times what was sown.
We are category 4 of the parable. We have a very big dream planted in the limbic system of the brain.
The Kingdom of God spurs us onto big things. But it’s not always easy. Not always smooth sailing
What discourages us?
1) Lack of commitment, Different Priorities, Wrong attitudes, Refusal to serve the Church, Conflict and criticism.
Paul made it clear to Timothy that he should expect suffering; Unrealistic expectations can lead to discouragement. 2 Tim 1:8, 2 Tim 1:15, 2 Tim 3:1 Paul prepared Timothy for a hard road. Down but not out!
2) Lack of visible Fruit.
Some times we can think we are doing something wrong. But the seed had to be good. Better seed is more important than huge amounts of weak seed. John 15:5. When it happens is up to God.
What about us?
Redhill is in a difficult patch. Young people need to move. Older aging congregation and attendance down.
It can be very discouraging and can make those who can get here want to give up because its hard.
Rekindle the flame. 2 Tim 1:6 Prayer, study, community.
Being part of the community is very important. It encourages and strengthens you and others. Lift those who are struggling. Make coming here a priority.
“Years ago I made a very personal decision and commitment to Christ: I AM NOT going to quit. Lord willing I will be in ministry until the day I die. I will not look for a way out when things get hard. My decision about ministry has been made so it removes the ‘you don’t have to do this anymore’ option and helps me get on to other positive options for problem solving. I pray regularly that I will not do something along the way to disqualify me from ministry. And when I am tired, afraid and uncertain I have already decided to just DO IT SCARED!”
Down but not out.