“By nature the heart of fallen man is as hard as sun-baked ground after a long drought. Its possessor is quite unconcerned about his eternal destiny, utterly indifferent whether God’s smile or God’s frown be upon him: thoroughly in love with sin, he is a total stranger to any grief occasioned by having displeased and dishonoured the Most High.
But when a work of Divine grace is begun in him, all this is changed. It is like plentiful showers of rain falling upon and moistening the earth. His heart is softened and chastened.
In consequence, he is deeply exercised as to his eternal destiny, greatly troubled over his past carelessness and wickedness, fearful that he has so sinned away his day of grace that he is beyond the reach of mercy.
His heart is sore wounded at the realization he has offended so grievously against God….. A work of grace must be wrought before the heart desires, seeks after, delights in God.”
~ Arthur Pink, “Internal Salvation”
“I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh. Then they will follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. They will be my people, and I will be their God.”
~ Ezekiel 11:19-20
Not much earth” (Matt. 13:5).
Shallow! It would seem from the teaching of this parable that we have something to do with the soil. The fruitful seed fell into “good and honest hearts.” I suppose the shallow people are the soil without much earth–those who have no real purpose, are moved by a tender appeal, a good sermon, a pathetic melody, and at first it looks as if they would amount to something; but not much earth–no depth, no deep, honest purpose, no earnest desire to know duty in order to do it. Let us look after the soil of our hearts.
When a Roman soldier was told by his guide that if he insisted on taking a certain journey it would probably be fatal, he answered, “It is necessary for me to go; it is not necessary for me to live.”
This was depth. When we are convicted something like that we shall come to something. The shallow nature lives in its impulses, its impressions, its intuitions, its instincts, and very largely its surroundings. The profound character looks beyond all these, and moves steadily on, sailing past all storms and clouds into the clear sunshine which is always on the other side, and waiting for the afterwards which always brings the reversion of sorrow, seeming defeat and failure.
When God has deepened us, then He can give us His deeper truths, His profoundest secrets, and His mightier trusts. Lord, lead me into the depths of Thy life and save me from a shallow experience!
On to broader fields of holy vision;
On to loftier heights of faith and love;
Onward, upward, apprehending wholly,
All for which He calls thee from above.