A Cultivated Heart - Encouragement Café - June 29, 2016

A Cultivated Heart
By Mindy Lee Hopman
Wednesday, June 29, 2016

As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it.  He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.  Matthew 13:23 ESV

Yum!  Basil, cilantro, chives, and oregano sprouted up quickly in the herb garden my daughter and I prepared and planted this spring.  The fruit of cherry tomatoes and melons emerged right before our eyes! 

Every morning we checked the garden to watch the sprouts take root.  Our sweet garden thrived under the constant care.

Not only did we spend time enjoying the beautiful, splendid sight of new growth, but we also spent time keeping the weeds at bay.  Weeds grow faster than seedlings.  They steal the nourishment as they overcome and choke out new life.  My daughter and I eliminated every weed we spotted immediately! 

During the 1st century, Jesus taught parables, or stories, to the people in a context they understood.  He told the farmers that their faith is like a seed that falls along the path, the rocks, the thorns, or good soil (Matthew 13:1-23).  The seed takes root only if the heart is cultivated and ready to receive it. 

What is your heart’s condition? 

Is the soil of your heart cultivated and ready to receive the seed of faith?  Have you received the seed of faith, but does it feel stifled lately?

Just like my garden, the weeds in our lives choke out new life. 

What weeds in your life do you need to eliminate?  What sin are you holding onto that is choking out your faith?

In order for your faith to grow and be fruitful, you must let go of anything that could stifle it out.  If you are living in sin, let it go.  If you are living a lie, let it go.  If you are holding back from living for Him, then it’s time to go!

God sees all and knows all.  You might as well hand it to Him and let Him carry it for you.  This does not mean to let go of a covenant, such as marriage.  Your complete satisfaction does not come from a spouse, instead it comes from the Savior. 

Your faith is born by the imperishable seed of Christ.  May it grow larger than the world impact around you, so that it blossoms and bears fruit a hundredfold!

Pray & Pursue!

Pray – Ask God to reveal to your heart anything that you have made larger than Him in your life (exercise, appearance, shopping, relationships, eating, smoking, drinking, drugs, etc.) 

Is there a relationship you need to mend?  Is there a person from whom you need to seek forgiveness?  Are you resisting your calling?

Pursue – Go after God with all of your heart, mind, soul, and strength!

Listen to worship music, memorize Scripture, pray at all times.  Make God the number one priority in your life.  Shift your focus from self to Savior in all things.

Heavenly Father, I praise You for who You are and what You are doing in my life at this very moment.  I choose You today as I cultivate my heart in order to get rid of any weeds of the world that would stifle me from growing in You.  I praise You for the seed of faith who is Christ, which You have planted in my heart.  May You grow it, may it be nourished by the Living Water, and may my life blossom into the woman You have created me to be!  In the precious name of Jesus I pray, Amen.

©2016 by Mindy Lee Hopman.  All rights reserved.

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Originally published Wednesday, 29 June 2016.