I believe the Parable of the Sower explained in 3 of the Gospels, reveals why so many of us have yet to receive healing. Are you trusting in God for a healing breakthrough? Then I hope this helps…
If Jesus explained the Parable of the Sower 3 times, then it must surely be essential to our lives. Today, I’d like to talk about the parable in relation to our healing journey.
I’ll also give 7 tips to help you as you plant God’s Word in your heart.
Matt 4:4 tells us we cannot live without the Word of God.
Think about the things we cannot live without – oxygen, food, water……the Word of God is a basic need!
Pro 4:22 says that God’s word is “life . . . and health to all their flesh” which suggests that there is a relationship between physical healing and the Bible.
“As you spend time in the Word of God, the Word is actually resuscitating and reviving your body” Joseph Prince. I don’t know about you, but I want the Word to impact my physical body!
So let’s dive into the Parable of the Sower and how Jesus explained it to see how it relates to our healing.
As I write this, I feel the excitement of the breakthrough, followed by that sinking feeling as I ponder the question ‘Why then, are there Christians who do spend time in the Word, yet their bodies are still not healed?’
I remember when I was a Charis Bible College student, one of the first modules was on the Parable of the Sower where Andrew Wommack explained why the Word fails in so many people.
You and I can read the Bible, even meditate on it, and we can speak verses and pray them over ourselves….but the condition of the heart determines whether or not God’s Word will bear fruit, according to Jesus’ explanation of the parable of the sower,
How many times have you read the Parable of the Sower and made the proud assumption that the soil of your heart is good? Recognising that our hearts may not be as soft as we think, takes the Holy Spirit and humility.
THE PARABLE OF THE SOWER EXPLAINED
some fell by the wayside; and it was trampled down, and the birds of the air devoured it. Luke 8:5
It’s easy to think that the first heart condition is talking just about those unsaved.
Whilst I think that’s true, in addition, I think this heart either just doesn’t believe that God heals today or does believe it but dilutes it by adding little caveats to the truth.
They may read ‘by his stripes we are healed’, but instantly they think that that it doesn’t apply to them. Perhaps they think it was for Bible times, or for certain Christians who are ‘good enough’.
They limit the truth working in their lives because they’ve taken the truth and diluted it.
This also may include those who adapt the verse ‘by his stripes, one day I will be healed’ or ‘by his stripes, I was healed in the Spiritual realm….’
I find that when we don’t see results, we can unintentionally alter the meaning of the verse.
I explained in IS IT ALWAYS GOD’S WILL TO HEAL? That Jesus died for our healing. Sometimes this truth gets drowned out by the forgiveness of sins message, but Jesus wants you and me well as much as he wants us saved from sins.
When you truly believe this, you are less likely to dismiss verses pertaining to healing. I have to admit, sometimes I have a thought in my head like ‘I’ll be like this forever’
When you’ve been ill a long time, it’s easy to allow your mind to start to wander down that path. I too therefore can find myself on this 1st path of choosing to not believe in healing.
Ensuring nervous system regulation therefore is a must. In Polyvagal theory, we say that ‘Story follows State’.
So, if you’re in a state of dorsal which causes depression, hopelessness and feeling numb’ your thoughts will follow this.
“The Word doesn’t work for me…..there’s no point reading the Bible…..healing just isn’t for me….”
Jesus explained in the Parable of the Sower that a hard heart will stop the seed of God’s Word from germinating.
Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.
I also think natural unbelief plays a part in this heart condition.
So, let’s say you read the verse ‘I was healed by Jesus stripes’ and immediately your mind zooms in on your body and symptoms, then those symptoms can steal away the truth of God’s Word.
Unconsciously you’re aware of the conflict between God’s word and reality.
Please take a read of MOSES AND THE BRONZE SERPENT. CHANGE HOW YOU PRAY
We need to be in the place of God’s Word being more real than the symptoms in our body.
I know for me, I have seasons where this is the case but certainly, it has not been consistent. Saved here is the Greek word ‘sozo’ which can also be translated ‘healed’.
Later on in this post, I will make some suggestions to help us with our unbelief.
Some fell on rock; and as soon as it sprang up, it withered away because it lacked moisture……Those on the rocky ground are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away. Luke 8: 6,13
Perhaps right now you completely believe that God heals today and you know His will and it excites you. But as healing is rarely overnight, life happens and the challenges we face are overwhelming, so we start to doubt.
I can tell you that I have been there so many times.
It’s easy for faith to rise in a church service when the Word has gone forth and I’m surrounded by faith-filled Christians.
I feel edified, uplifted and looking forward to all God has in store. But then as the week progresses, that faith starts to dwindle.
Think of someone who starts a new hobby with the best of intentions, but, just like a New Year’s resolution, the novelty wears off.
When this happens, we may conclude that there is no point believing God because we don’t get the desired result in our time-frame and we give up, a bit like heart soil 1.
Again, when I’m in this place, I ask myself what my nervous system is doing. Chances are, I’m in survival Dorsal mode ‘what’s the point…’ or in the fight/flight survival mode ‘I need to do more, pray more, be more, read more….’ there’s a sense of urgency.
Our brains exist to protect us, that’s why we start to think these thoughts. The key is to recognise these thoughts and choose not to buy into them.
(If you’re angry at God because you haven’t seen the healing you expected, you might start to allow thoughts to follow the path ‘God doesn’t care…He doesn’t love me….’
My personal belief is that if someone walks away from the Lord, then they never really had a deep-rooted revelation of His love.
Knowing the Father’s heart is our empowerment to keep going.)
And some fell among thorns, and the thorns sprang up with it and choked it……Now the ones that fell among thorns are those who, when they have heard, go out and are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity. Luke 8:7, 14
Now to the 3rd heart soil. Perhaps you do read the Word daily, even speaking it over your life and trying to renew your mind by meditating on Scripture.
But we live in the Word where we’re bombarded with anxieties and concerns.
Money worries, fear of the future, or anxieties about loved ones. Remember, when we have either anger or fear, this indicates that we’re operating from the Sympathetic part of the nervous system.
There is no healing here. When we are in this state, cortisol or adrenaline drip into our bodies amplifying symptoms.
If we try to challenge thinking in this place, oftentimes the results are short-lived because our nervous system needs to change first.
I can think of several Godly people who won’t watch the news or read newspapers. The fear it invokes can be addictive.
In addition to worries, this heart soil is far too consumed with worldly matters. Perhaps other things have become more important to you.
Are you too concerned about your image or what others think of you? How some people long to be noticed by the ‘right’ people, the ‘in’ crowd.
These verses stress the damage riches can do, but even a lack of finances can consume some people.
We live in a world that glorifies productivity. Being busy is rewarded and honoured.
What occupies your thought time each day? Perhaps you’re nursing a wound from the past or dwelling on your own failings. See “PICK UP YOUR MAT AND WALK” IS THIS WHY YOU’RE STUCK?”
Are you comparing yourself to those around you? Are you people-pleasing or being perfectionistic in some way?
Do you spend way too much time watching TV or scrolling social media? I don’t think these activities are damaging per se, but knowing what I do about the nervous system, chances are this behaviour is masking something – a bit like comfort eating.
So, it’s not that your thoughts are sinful, but that you’re spending all your time preoccupied with ‘stuff’ instead of in the Word.
Those in 3rd World countries don’t have the worldliness that we seem to have. I wonder if that’s why they see more miracles. By worldliness, I’m also referring to the excess of productivity, image consciousness, busyness and multi-tasking.
Some countries in the world forbid Bibles and going to church. We have it handed to us on a plate yet probably don’t value it as much as we could.
Even spending all day thinking about illness and symptoms can become a god. In his teaching, Andrew Wommack believes this is where most people in the body of Christ are.
I don’t know about you, but I certainly relate.
Sometimes our fears and worries choking the Word have come from the trauma we experienced in the past or even the voice we inherited from our parents.
These sorts of thoughts dilute faith. Even if you are meditating on verses and your devotional life is healthy, the seed is choked by your internal landscape.
This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night…..and then you will have good success
Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown….. the ones that fell on the good ground are those who, having heard the word with a noble and good heart, keep it and bear fruit with patience
Luke 8: 8, 15
So finally we reach the 4th good and noble heart that receives the Word and stays in the heart. There are no rocks, weeds and thorns here.
These are the Christians who meditate on the Scriptures each day, really planting the seed. They are not consumed with worldly concerns or a crowded mind that would choke the seed.
These people elevate God’s Word, giving it priority.
When Jesus explained the Parable of the Sower, He implied that healing is often incremental. And not the instantaneous healing we want or expect.
Mark puts it like “some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred.” Mark 4:20
We don’t just read the Word once and expect a harvest, we have to practice patience and build faith by hearing the Word continually……non of which happens in a vacuum
“but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.” Heb 6:12
Scholars disagree over the meaning of 100 in Scripture. Some say it means ‘fullness or completion’ as in the lost sheep parable. The shepherd leaves the 99 to find the 1 and return it to the flock – hence completion.
I love this in relation to our healing. God completes what He starts and if we’re not seeing results yet, we can still expect healing in all its fullness.
Others say 100 refers to ‘from dead to alive’. Abraham was 100 years old so unable to father children yet Sarah gave birth to Isaac, the result of God’s promise.
Is a part of your body dead? God’s Word can breathe new life over you.
Whatever the definition of 100, I love both of them as they encourage us to keep on believing God for healing.
7 TIPS WHEN MEDITATING ON GOD’S WORD.
1. ASK GOD TO GIVE YOU SPIRITUAL HUNGER.
Through the Parable of the Sower, Jesus explained to his disciples the importance of spiritual hunger.
Are you hungry for the Word? If not, ask God to give you spiritual hunger. It might be worth asking the Holy Spirit if there is a reason you don’t want to spend time with Him. (After all, it’s not a chore).
Could it be that you are unconsciously angry at Him, or maybe deep down you feel it’s hopeless because you’ve been ill for so long? Perhaps you’re surrounding yourself with the wrong people.
“…I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.” Job 23:12
Craving the Word, as much as a starving person craves food. If you’re not here yet, know this is ok too. Ask God to help.
2. KNOW THE LOVE OF GOD
Have you received the love of God? It might be that meditating on verses about how God’s love might be more beneficial, rather than healing verses. I know this is something I had to do.
Faith works through love. You may know every verse in the Bible, but if you don’t know that God loves you, then those verses won’t transform you.
One activity I often do with clients is a ‘good things’ diary. At the end of the day, ask yourself how God has loved you today.
So today, a friend of mine unexpectedly called in to see me and we laughed together about something. I gave time to really savour the sun on my face and listen to the rain fall on the roof.
These are not major things, but God knows the things that make me smile. This reinforces that God is always blessing and keeping His eyes on me.
If you can notice 1 glimmer, you can notice 2…There is light in the darkness but we have to train ourselves to see it.
3. HOW ARE YOU HEARING?
Luke 8:18 says “Therefore take heed how you hear.”
We don’t just read to learn something, we want to open our heart to hear what God is saying in that moment.
Reading the Bible quickly, or multi-tasking at the same time is not honouring or beneficial.
Have you ever had a friend or family member who only phones you when they’re driving somewhere, or they’ll chat when doing the housework at the same time?
When we speak to God, He gives us His undivided attention. Do you give Him the same?
So this is about our intention as well as attention.
My son, pay attention to what I say; turn your ear to my words. Pro 4: 20
Do we hear with our physical ears, or with our hearts?
A few verses later Jesus tells his disciples to go to the other side of the Sea of Galilee. In other words, He sows a seed.
He then falls asleep on the boat whilst his disciples stress and panic because of the storm, thus proving that they perceive their circumstances and the storm around them to be more powerful than the Word.
They heard Jesus with their physical ears, but not with their hearts. Their hearts are either like the rocky or the thorny ground.
It can be the same with us when we read the Word.
We read that it is God’s will for us to be well but then start to panic when we don’t see the fruits.
In all honesty, this is where those of us with chronic conditions are at a disadvantage. It is so much easier to hear with our hearts when ill health only lasts a short period of time.
We have to remember that there’s nothing the enemy wants more than to keep us away from God’s Word.
I find it is more effective to spend time on one or two verses or short passages than reading reams of Scripture and not taking it in.
Jesus explained in the Parable of the Sower that the seed itself is never the problem and that we have a responsibility to ensure our heart is supple for the Word to take root.
4. PRACTICE OUTCOME INDEPENDENCE
“the seed should sprout and grow, he himself does not know how.” Mark 4:26–27 NKJV
Think about a seed that is planted. It may be many weeks or even months before any evidence of growth is visible.
But under the surface of the soil, a lot is happening.
If we’re planting healing scriptures in our hearts, and then wondering where the healing is, then our impatience will cause us to give up.
Can we trust that God’s Word will heal our bodies if we just leave it planted?
If the healing is more of a priority than Jesus himself, and the healing doesn’t happen, we will likely get despondent and give up. When we’re outcome-independent, we relax into it.
We recognise that Jesus is the priority and healing the by-product.
God’s the healer, not us. We don’t need to fix ourselves or focus on healing but rather to rest in His hands.
5. MEDITATE ON GOD’S WORD
Jesus explained to His disciples through the parable of the sower the importance of elevating His Word above all else.
Try learning verses and speaking them over your life over and over. I have verse cards in different rooms in my home.
Listening to anointed preaches on YouTube and not just on Sundays plus playing and singing worship music regularly.
This is a little different to hearing Him.
According to Joseph Prince, meditating on God’s Word refers to muttering.
Other translations of meditating on the Word involve taking a verse and spending several minutes dissecting it.
When I meditate on a verse, I usually write it out, one word or phrase at a time. I look for all sorts of different ways the verse can be said, and ask God for any revelations or insights into what He wants to share.
(As I write this, I realise I don’t do this nearly as often as I could)
As I pray, I usually begin by speaking and praying the verse over my life and listen for anything God may want to reveal to me.
“I will meditate on Your precepts, And contemplate Your ways.” Ps 119: 15
Andrew Wommack says that meditating and imagining go hand in hand. What are you imagining when you meditate over certain verses?
How do you meditate on Scripture?
Barry Bennett believes that reading the Word alone isn’t enough to plant the Word in our hearts, we have to SPEAK
“What do you do with a seed? If you want to see increase, you plant it! How do you plant the seed of faith? By speaking…… Our words of faith must be ‘sown’ if we hope to reap the promises of God. That is how the Kingdom works. God has given us all of His promises (2 Cor. 1:20, 2 Pet. 1:3-4), and the promises are activated by the seed of faith.” Barry Bennett
John Bevere says that faith has a language so speaking and muttering verses is how they are planted in our hearts.
6. BE SELF AWARE
Practise being a curious observer of your thoughts, actions, responses, emotions, motives etc. Recognise they are not who you are and distance yourself from them.
Is your external and internal world in harmony? Are you operating from childhood programming or authenticity?
Do you know your triggers and your body reactions?
Build a relationship with your body and listen to it’s cues. What is your body telling you?
What thoughts are playing in your mind? (This is where I fall down!). Are they thoughts of fear, worry, criticism etc?
How do you interact with the world? What’s your nervous system up to? Without self-awareness, we’ll never know what is stopping the Word from taking root and reaping a harvest.
We have neuroreceptors, that constantly take in cues from the environment and communicate them to our bodies. This is done on an unconscious level.
7. LIMIT THINGS WHICH CONTRADICT THE WORD
There is no point in being self-aware if we do not allow this awareness to inform our behaviour and actions. What is in your life that reinforces the belief that God’s Word isn’t true?
Jesus clearly explained in the Parable of the Sower that there are numerous things which contradict His Word from taking root.
Could it be that watching the news too much causes an unnecessary level of distress?
Through self-awareness, you realise those things in your life that limit God’s word from working.
Are you able to decrease the amount of hold these have over you? Could you put boundaries with certain people? Stop Googling medical sites. If watching the news distresses you, could you limit this?
We want to create the right environment for healing to happen.
Avoiding triggers completely isn’t the solution as this avoidance just reinforces the trigger in the long run. We can re-interpret and challenge our beliefs though, or we can explore our reactions and seek God for insight and revelation.
I heard someone say that we don’t isolate ourselves from the World, but we do insulate ourselves from it. Everything in the world will try to convince us that God’s Word isn’t true.
We want God’s Word to take priority in our daily lives in order for it to transform (and heal) us.
Oftentimes when we hear about healing, there is emphasis on praying for it, but without the Word of God, according to Andrew Wommack, we’re just watering barren ground!
We need an environment of faith which ‘comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.
As I write this, I am certainly challenged. If I am being honest, my heart can fluctuate between hardness, thorny and rocky ground!
How about you?
How Jesus explained The Parable of the Sower is one of those teachings that I need to revisit time and time again. I’m sure you have your own tips for staying and abiding in the Word and keeping your heart soft and supple.
Thank goodness we are not left to our own resources on this! We are a work in progress and have the best helper we could ask for.
I hope today’s post will support you on your journey.
Love Lorna x