The Stony Ground

In Mark 4 we read the Parable of the Sower.

And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth: But when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away.

Mark 4:5-6

And these are they likewise which are sown on stony ground; who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with gladness; And have no root in themselves, and so endure but for a time: afterward, when affliction or persecution ariseth for the word’s sake, immediately they are offended.

Mark 4:16-17

Many times in my past I would find myself trying to gauge my value based on others who I would put on pedestals. I would bend over backwards to try to impress them. They were always only impressed temporarily. They only cared until something new and better came their way. I couldn’t see my value. Everything I put forth came back void.

It wasn’t until I started praying to see myself how God sees me that I started to see small glimpses of my value. I still didn’t believe it, but I could finally see some potential. I still found myself seeking value from people who just couldn’t see it in me. I felt conflicted. Why didn’t they confirm the value God sees in me? Why can’t God send me a sign? A few years later God showed me that these people were not acting in my best interest. The truth was that they were my biggest critics and no matter how good what I did was, they still would only dwell on my flaws. They crushed my confidence.

God allowed me to slowly come weed them out of my life to the point where they no longer had any input. Their words no longer were valuable to me. They are not helping me grow. They aren’t wanting what was best for me. They aren’t growing in their lives, either. They are not someone who inspires or influences me.

Soon, I felt relief. I was amazed how much stress and pressure melted away because I didn’t allow them to affect my life anymore. Now I’m focused on pleasing God. All that matters is in the end I hear “Well done thy good and faithful servant.” God isn’t keeping a running list of all the people I impressed on Earth. He doesn’t care how many social media followers I have or how many likes my posts have gotten. NO! He’s keeping count on how often I spread His good news! How well I trusted Him instead of lived in fear of offending others with His truth. I am made in His image and I need to be a reflection of Him.

Today you can get rid of your haters by testing their motives with God’s Word.

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, Think on these things.

Philippians 4:8

In other words, do they gossip? Are they honorable and worthy of respect? Do they do what’s right according to God’s Word? Are they pure and wholesome – or are they perverted and vulgar? Do they keep peace or start drama? Do they encourage others by their actions and words? Are they a good example that deserves praise and recognition? Focus on the positive things and implant His Word in your heart to guide you.

If they don’t meet up to God’s standards then you need to let them go! Yes, it may hurt, but God will replace them with Godly friends to grow with you spiritually instead of tear you down and hold you back.

Trust God.

Stop trying to impress the wrong people.

They only notice the good things temporarily and then tear you down.

Don’t let your value be judged by the weeds. They’ll just kill whatever fruit you’re trying to grow because they don’t have real deep roots with the good you’re trying to spread.

Let’s Pray.

Lord Jesus,

We pray you forgive us for putting others opinions and value upon us. We pray that we see ourselves through your eyes. Let us see our value and self worth. Help us have a holy confidence that comes from you and give us joy that surpasses all understanding so we can be witnesses of your love and true joy. Help us to encourage others and know your word. We pray this in Jesus name. Amen!

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