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You Choose the Heart!

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You Choose the Heart!

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The soil that the seed fell on represents four categories of hearers' hearts, four different reactions to the Word of God: the hard heart, the shallow heart, the crowded heart and the fruitful heart. Hard Heart The hard heart is represented by the seed that falls along the roadside. This represents people who hear the Word of God, but never really believe it. Just picture good seed being scattered all over a basketball court—there's not much chance anything good will come out of that. Shallow Heart Then there is the shallow heart. This is the seed that falls on stony ground. It signifies the people who hear the Word of God and receive it with joy; but because there is no root to sustain them, they wither. Crowded Heart Next, there is the crowded heart. This is the seed that falls on ground where weeds choke its growth. Slowly and surely, these people, busy with the cares and riches of the world, lose interest in the things of God. But that is not the most prevalent "crowed-heart syndrome." The crowded heart is often crowded with emotional and painful baggage from the past, and it has not allowed the forgiving and healing power of the Holy Spirit to resolve, work with and heal these hurts. Instead, these hurts are carried along and nursed, and they end up crowding out the purpose for our calling, to be servants of God and His Church. Fruitful Heart Finally, there is the fruitful heart that receives the Word. This seed falls on good ground and the plants produce a rich harvest. There is a reality check in all of this. We are the ones who determine what kind of soil our hearts will be. We decide whether we will have a hard heart, a shallow heart, a crowded heart or a receptive heart. This is exactly what James meant when he said, "Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls" (James 1:21). The Word of God cannot work in our lives unless we have receptive hearts hallmarked by meekness, humility, longsuffering, forgiveness and a commitment to our call of duty. Have a heart—a receptive and therefore fruitful heart. UN