Of course, the first thing I had planned was to start the day of right- in God's Word. That was the plan, anyway.
But before my second cup of coffee this morning, events took another turn. It started with the discovery that my daughter would need a new bed- before tonight. Right after that was the accidental discovery that the cat has worms. Both of these little surprises happened before I had had a second cup of coffee, or even had time to get dressed.
Suddenly my meticulously planned day was shot. Ready or
not, the day had begun and we sprang into action. My thoughts immediately went from beginning my day with my focus directed toward the Lord, to scouring the ads and the internet for a new bed for my daughter (after all, she needed it by tonight)... then there was the cat crisis. I had to deal with finding a vet that could see the cat and get rid of the worms (and figure out how she got them in the first place when she never goes outside). It was not the peaceful beginning I had planned for the day.
How easily we get sidetracked from the things that are truly important...from taking the time- however limited that time may be- to acknowledge the Lord in our daily lives. To spend a few minutes reading His Word, or to offer a prayer of thanksgiving, and ask His direction for our day... or even to remember His interventions on our behalf and the times He has answered our prayers.
No wonder Jesus felt the need to warn His disciples not to let the cares of the world choke the Word out of our lives and make us unfruitful.
Mark 4: 3 Begins the parable of the sower who went out to sow the Word. The seed that was sown produced varying results. Not because of the sower's actions, but because of those who 'heard' the Word (which was sown).
Beginning in verse 13-20, Jesus explains the parable to the disciples:
There are those who hear the Word, and Satan immediately steals it from their hearts (before it can produce fruit)...then there are those who hear the Word and receive it with gladness, but having no root in themselves, they quickly fall away when tribulation or persecution arises because of the Word. Next are the ones "sown among thorns," and this is what Jesus said (warned) about them:
They are the ones who hear the Word, and the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the love of other things entering in, choke the Word and it becomes unfruitful (vs.18).
Of course, there is also the seed sown "on good ground- who hear the Word, accept it, and bear
Now I know that in Jesus' time, life was much more 'relaxed' than it is now. Much simpler. And yet, Jesus knew that those who loved Him were in danger of becoming so weighed down with the cares of life, the deceitfulness of riches, and the love of other things, that if they weren't careful, His Word - and its intended fruits- would become choked out of their lives.
Consider this -if even they- who lived in much slower, simpler days than ours were in danger, how much more so are we who live today in this world of overtime, 'on demand' entertainment, shopping malls, pandemic pornography, amusement parks, and electronic toys! How much more vigilant we need to be in order to make sure these things don't choke His Word out of our lives!