Is your heart like thorny soil?

Jesus’ parable of the sower has become a one-trick pony. We wheel it out whenever we engage people with the gospel.

It’s an encouragement on a mission-trip, a youth camp or when we’re praying a friend would meet Jesus.

“Don’t worry. We sow the word; it’s down to God to bring growth. He knows whether we’re sowing the word on the path, the rocky ground or the fertile soil.”

For sure. God knows, and time will tell.

But what about the soil among the thorns – the soil which isn’t out there? The soil which lines the hearts of people sat next to you on a Sunday morning?

Indeed, your own heart may be the soil among the thorns.


Where there was no soil, God’s word was rejected (Mark 4:15). The soil over rocky ground received it but quickly fell away (Mark 4:16-17).

But the crop growing in the thorny soil didn’t fall away at all. It stuck around church. But produced no fruit (Mark 4:18).

Jesus is describing professing Christians who are choked by the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things (Mark 4:19).

These are Christians, obsessing over the hope of soft-furnishings and loft-conversions. They’re comfortable, but obsessed with what the world can offer. So they’re anxious.


Suddenly, Jesus’ parable finds its mark – the heart of Christians like you and me.


We want to know, are we the soil which will prove fruitful?

As blood-bought children of the King, make his kingdom your treasure, and your heart will follow (Matthew 6:21). Out of this heart will grow fruit of his spirit (Galatians 5:22).

Make this your ambition. Pursue it. Love it, as this is what Jesus died to save you to.

So before asking about the soil out there, what soil lines your own heart?