When speaking to someone was impossible, Jesus became an engaging figure, using stories to captivate his audience. Like tiny little morsels, Jesus’ parables contain a wealth of knowledge about life. On this particular Sabbath in Matthew 13:1-9, the crowds grew so extensive that Jesus entered a boat just off shore, sitting down as his followers gathered around the beach to listen.
As he continued, Jesus had the farmers in the palm of his hands, speaking about the different terrains each encounters. Since cursing the land in Genesis 3:17-18, finding ideal conditions was rare, leaving compacted, rocky and weed infested areas to grow crops. God’s words in Genesis foreshadowed current conditions with painful toil resulting in thorns, thistles and some plants to eat, Matthew 13:22.
Within my own yard, I see the thorns of life more than ever before. It seems like the older I get, briar patches of worry begin to choke the joy out of life. Meanwhile, sticker bushes leave marks, wounds to my soul, often tearing my heart in the wrong direction. Thistles have become like sand on the seashore, sticking like burrs, embedding within my body like a parasite. If I don’t seek spiritual medical attention soon, even my mind is in danger of being poisoned like Peter, Matthew 16:23.
Unfortunately, these thorns aren’t going anywhere until Jesus returns. Therefore, you must use your Bible as a spiritual Farmers Almanac, getting clued in daily about impending droughts, famine or trials. Although you have no control over the soil, you can place yourself into a healthier social environment. Change is hard, but its a step in God’s direction. May the Holy Spirit serve as a spiritual Round Up to stop, thorns, thistles and weeds of life before they wrap around your soul.
by Jay Mankus