“The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his field.” (Matt. 13:31)
Expanded Passage: Matthew 13:31-32
Who would think anything about God’s kingdom could be as small and insignificant as a mustard seed? Over the last two thousand years, however, we have seen how this kingdom began with just a few people and grew into a vast assembly with many branches and millions of believers.
Yet a tidbit that Jesus added to this parable causes me to pause and think. He showed us that the largest garden plant becomes a tree and soon attracts the birds to perch in its branches. The birds in another parable of the kingdom were no good (Matt. 13). The seeds that the farmer scattered on the path were snatched away and eaten by those pesky birds. When Jesus explained the parable of the sower, he said that the birds represented the Evil One who comes and steals the seed sown in a person’s heart.
Yes, growth is always good, but with it comes the pain of bad birds that find sanctuary in the branches of God’s congregation. Sadly, I have seen too many church people whose actions have snatched away the seeds of God’s Word planted in hearts. Jesus prompted us to prepare the soil of our hearts so when his seeds are sown, even the small ones, they are safe from our Enemy, and able to grow and thrive.
Prepare your heart to receive the good seed of his Word.
S. Schulz wrote devotionals for earlier editions of Light from the Word. They have been drawn from the archives and reprinted for this publication.
© 2024 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission. Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.