Matthew 13:20,21 - Are Your Spiritual Roots Shallow Or Deep?

But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he
that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it; Yet hath he
not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or
persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended. Mat
13:20, 21 (KJV)

The shallow, rocky soil represents the heart of a man who hears
the message and receives it with real joy, but he doesn't have much
depth in his life, and the seeds don't root very deeply, and after a
while when trouble comes, or persecution begins because of his
beliefs, his enthusiasm fades, and he drops out. Mat 13:20, 21 (TLB)

The four types of soil represent different responses to God's
message. People respond differently because they are in different states
of readiness. Some are hardened, others are shallow, others are
contaminated by distracting worries, and some are receptive. How has God's
Word taken root in your life? What kind of soil are you? [Life
Application SB]

This soil represents men who receive God's Word eagerly, but
superficially. They get all excited about him until the first little test or
bit of ridicule comes along. Then, when the heat is on, they cannot
take it. They lose all their enthusiasm and are a total loss for God.
[Jamieson, Fausset, And Brown Commentary]

Deep Roots
Many people see abundant spring rains as a great blessing to
farmers, especially if the rains come after the plants have sprouted and
are several inches tall. What they don't realize is that even a
short drought can have a devastating effect on a crop of seedlings
that has received too much rain.
Why? Because during frequent rains, the young plants are not
required to push their roots deeper into the soil in search of water. If
a drought occurs later, plants with shallow root systems will
quickly die.
We often receive abundance in our lives--rich fellowship, great
teaching, thorough "soakings" of spiritual blessings. Yet, when stress or
tragedy enters our lives, we may find ourselves thinking God has
abandoned us or is unfaithful. The fact is, we have allowed the "easiness"
of our lives to keep us from pushing our spiritual roots deeper. We
have allowed others to spoon-feed us, rather than develop our own
deep personal relationship with God through prayer and study of His
Only the deeply rooted are able to endure hard times without
wilting. The best advice is to enjoy the "rain" while seeking to grow
even closer to Him. [God's Little Devotional Bible re Rom.8:28]

H. A. Ironside told of a godly man named Andrew Frazer who had
come to southern California to recover from a serious illness. Though
this Irishman was quite weak, he opened his worn Bible and began
expounding the truths of God's Word in a way that Ironside had never; heard
before. So moved by Frazer's words was Ironside that his curiosity drove
him to ask, Where did you learn these things? Did you learn them in
some college or seminary The sickly man said, "My dear young man, I
learned these things on my knees on the mud floor of a little sod
cottage in the north of Ireland There with my open Bible before me I
used to kneel for hours at a time and ask the Spirit of God to reveal
Christ to my soul and to open the Word to my heart. He taught me more
on my knees on that mud floor than I ever could have learned in all
the seminaries or colleges in the world." [Woodrow Droll; Time With
God SB]

Tuned In
One beautiful spring morning, an experienced hiker was walking
with a friend down Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. The streets rumbled
with the sounds of weekday rush-hour traffic. Suddenly the hiker
stopped. "Listen." he said "I hear a cricket."
"That's nonsense!" his friend scoffed. "Why do you think you
hear a lowly cricket in all this downtown uproar?"
"I'm sure I do, the hiker said. "Watch this." He pulled a dime
from his pocket and dropped it on the pavement. Almost all of the
people nearby stopped at the sound of the coin hitting the concrete.
"All of us are tuned to certain things," the hiker said to his
friend. "Our ears hear what they are tuned to. Mine happen to be tuned
to crickets."
In a similar way we need to be open to God's word. Jesus said we
need "eyes to see" and "ears to hear" before we can tune in to the
gospel. [Youth SB]