5 “‘He took one of the seedlings of the land and put it in fertile soil. He planted it like a willow by abundant water, 6 and it sprouted and became a low, spreading vine. Its branches turned toward him, but its roots remained under it. So it became a vine and produced branches and put out leafy boughs. 7 “‘But there was another great eagle with powerful wings and full plumage. The vine now sent out its roots toward him from the plot where it was planted and stretched out its branches to him for water. 8 It had been planted in good soil by abundant water so that it would produce branches, bear fruit and become a splendid vine.’
A few weeks back after the fence was put up around the garden plot I remember seeing bags and bags of compost being brought in. They were each diligently spread throughout the sandy soil to help prepare it for the growing season.
Perhaps the most important ingredient of growing a garden is the proper preparation of the soil. Those who are new to gardening often fail to recognize this vital step, and so their gardens yield small, unripe, diseased, and unappealing vegetables.
We can compare the soil of the ground to our heart. Unless we prepare our hearts properly for what God wants to plant inside of us, we will not yield good fruit. If the soil of our heart is not “fertile” it will not receive what God plants in obedient growth.
The Lord loves the soil of a heart that is fertile, and ready to receive the implanted word of God. Fertile soil is that kind of heart which is both humble and responsive (obedient). We must also be as plowmen, who are willing to break up the hardened ground of our hearts. Ground can become hardened by the deceitfulness of sin, and so we must pray and ask that God put the sharp blade of His plow into these areas of our life (Hebrews 3:12-13). Also, we must encourage one another in these areas, as good vinedressers.
Dear Lord, we pray that we would focus on preparing our hearts so that You can work through us and that we would bear much fruit for You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.