Jesus Feeding the 5,000

A daily devotion for May 14th

The Shallow Life

The seed falling on rocky ground refers to someone who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away.

Matthew 13:20-21

What is the matter with this heart? It is rocky. But it doesn't mean a soil containing a lot of rocks. The idea here is that there are a few inches of shallow topsoil on a broad shelf of bedrock. The key our Lord gives us here is that, he has no root. We would call this a shallow life, one who flits from this to that, from one experience to another, never content with anything for very long. We all know people like this. Their heart is always on the prowl, restless, searching, groping. You have met people like that — faddists, enthusiasts for the gospel this week (Oh, what a wonderful thing this is!), and next week it is vitamin Z, or whatever. The word our Lord uses to describe this kind of person is, literally, seasonal. When the season is on to believe the gospel, they believe it.

Many people like that are being reached — among the tens of thousands of young people who are turning to Christ today, there are many who are just like this. But when the season changes they will drop right out; they won't continue; they will fall away; they are seasonal. They live on the surface, emotional, with no depth in their life, nothing going deep into their heart. When the gospel reaches this kind, they receive it with joy; they think it is the best thing they have ever experienced; they are enthusiastic! But when the season changes, and tribulation and persecution come, when it is no longer a warm, glorious day for the word but becomes cold and frosty, immediately they are gone. They wither and die.

Thus our Lord illustrates the terrible danger of a shallow heart, that does not want to evaluate and go deeper but is always living on the surface, always relating to the event of the moment, and concerned only with that. The devil took care of the first kind of soil, but the flesh takes care of this one. The emotional seasons of life make it very difficult for him to hold to the word of God which changes his heart.

Lord, deliver me from a shallow heart, which lives on the surface. Thank you that I am no longer one who must be ruled by the flesh. Your Spirit has come within me to help and teach and transform me into the person you want me to be.

Life Application

Is my faith "seasonal"? Is it based purely on emotion? Is my faith resilient enough to endure trials and disappointments?

This Daily Devotion was Inspired by one of Ray's Messages

The Mystery of History

Listen to Ray