Let Your Heart Be “Good Soil”

Brenna and Scott GillisBY:  Brenna Gillis

E-MAIL ADDRESS:  brenna.gillis@gmail.com

BIBLE TEXT:  Matthew 13:23:  “The seed that fell on good soil represents those who truly hear and understand God’s word and produce a harvest of thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as had been planted!”

PERSONAL REFLECTION: When life gets busy and hectic my attention span tends to suffer.  I’ve been known to come out of a store without the ONE thing I needed to purchase or to read an entire page of text without grasping a single word.  Basically, when I’m feeling overwhelmed, things just don’t “stick” in my mind as well as I’d like.  With most of us juggling numerous roles and responsibilities on a daily basis, I assume I’m not the only one whose mind feels like Teflon at times!

Not only does the mind respond to stress in this manner, our hearts can also be like Teflon when we’re overwhelmed by the cares of this world.  Have you ever started the day with an incredible devotional, only to live the rest of the day overcome by worry and busyness?  I know I have.

Jesus clearly understood this problem when He shared the parable of a farmer scattering seed on different types of soil (see Matthew 13:1-23).  According to the parable seed that fell on a footpath, on stony ground, and among thorns was unable to take root and grow.  In other words, a heart that is not prepared to receive and respond to God’s Word is analogous to poor soil in which nothing can flourish; the message that God wants to convey to this heart doesn’t “stick,” leaving the individual largely unchanged. However, when our hearts are like rich, fertile soil, God’s Word can take root and produce fruit in our lives!  For me, this means that daily devotionals and Sunday morning sermons can remain in my heart and mind for longer than just a few minutes.  They can “stick” with me long-term, producing change and spiritual growth in my life.

PERSONAL APPLICATION: To help my heart be “good soil” in which God’s Word can flourish, I must first and foremost hand my stress, worries, and busyness over to Him.  This frees me to enter the Father’s presence with a receptive heart—ready to let His Word take root in my life.

PRAYERLord, thank you for creating us to communicate with you.  Thank you for the gift of the Holy Spirit, who empowers us to hear your voice and receive your promises.  Father, help our hearts to be fertile soil for your Word to take root and produce fruit in our lives.  We relinquish our cares to you, so that our hearts can attend to all you desire to communicate with us.  


Brenna lives in Nashville, TN with her husband, Scott.  She was born and raised in Wisconsin, but moved to Tennessee two years ago to study nursing at Vanderbilt.  Currently, she works as a psychiatric nurse practitioner at a private practice in Murfreesboro, and is also completing her doctorate degree part-time.  When she is not working or studying, Brenna loves to spend time with her husband, family, and friends—and especially enjoys being active outdoors, dancing and Zumba-ing, and chatting with loved ones over a (large) mug of coffee!  At Life, Brenna serves in the Broo, at the Kids’ Check-in station, and on the Ministry Team.

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