As I started to work on my backyard clean-up this Spring I took on a project without considering the volume of work that would follow. An area of my backyard had been hijacked by a gruesome bandit of weeds who had choked the very life out of every plant in the vicinity. I was on a mission to tear down these intruders and make a new home for some fresh seedlings.
Little did I know how entangled and deeply rooted these critters had planted themselves. It reminded me of the nature of sin and how it “so easily ensnares us”. (Hebrews 12:1) When Jesus explained the Parable of the Sower (Matthew 13:18-23, Mark 4:13-20, Luke 8:11-15) He said there were three sins in particular that have the ability to choke out the liveliness of God’s Word in our hearts, rendering us unfruitful.
Similar to every gardener who seeks to nurture and protect their garden, every Christian who desires to live a fruitful life will need to be on guard against the thorns that come to choke out all signs of spiritual life and vitality. “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.” (Proverbs 4:23, NIV)