Thorny-Hearted Christians

"And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection." - Luke 8:14

This familiar passage in the Parable of the Sower describes far more "Christians" that we would like to admit. All of us are subjected to various cares.Everyone has to deal with the abundance, adequacy, or shortage of riches. The enjoyment of sundry pleasures is common to all men. There is nothing inherently wrong with cares, riches and pleasures of this life. The tragedy comes when we allow them to choke out our love, devotion and zeal in service to God.

Consider those of us who have "fingers in so many pies" of activity, that there is little or no time left to assemble with the saints, study privately, or visit the needy. The cares of this world are choking the spiritual life out of us.

Notice those of us whose whole existence is built around the making of money. We can always "find the time" for overtime or an extra job for more money. But for some reason, such things as mid-week services, attending an area gospel meeting, or a home Bible class is just "impossible" to work into our schedule. Could it be that the riches of this world are choking the spiritual life out of us?

Look at ourselves as we become wrapped up in a hobby or avocation. We can always so rearrange our time as to frequently enjoy ourselves in that pleasurable pastime. However, prayer and Bible study with our family or getting involved in the work of the local congregation have no appeal to us. Pleasures are thus choking the spiritual life out of us.

Common to all "thorny-hearted" Christians is our utter inability to find time for the work of the Lord. We consistently avow that we "don't have time" for such things. We become the chronic complainers in congregations. We resist and are offended by the calls and words of encouragement of our concerned brethren. We are the same year after year. We never seem to learn. We never seem to change. In the Lord's words, we are bringing no fruit to perfection.

Dear Reader, let us examine our lives. Are we letting the cares, riches and pleasures of life choke out our effective service and growth in the Lord?