The farmer sows the word. Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them. Others, like seed sown on rocky places, hear the word and at once receive it with joy. But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. Still others, like seed sown among thorns, hear the word; but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful. Others, like seed sown on good soil, hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop—some thirty, some sixty, some a hundred times what was sown. -Mark 4:14-20, NIVI personally have a lot of history with the parable of the sower found in Mark chapter 4. I've heard a lot preached about it, and I can also say that I've been at least three out of the four soils sometime within my natural life. The four different types of soils all describe the four different ways that people may respond to the word of God. They range from apathy to compelling enthusiasm. The first type of seed, the one eaten by birds, is the response a person has when they hear the Word of God and never get a chance to react to it in any way. They automatically reject it, but almost subconsciously. I know this happens because when I was younger, I did that. I totally disregarded what God and the Bible had to say. The Word went in one ear and out the other. I didn't even give it a chance.
The second type of soil I've definitely displayed in the past is the thorny ground. By that point I really loved God and wanted to live for Him, but just wasn't willing to take time to read my Bible, pray, and focus on Him. I won't use business as an excuse, because there is always time for God. I've heard a youth pastor say it like this, "If you're too busy for God, then you're too busy." I know this statement is true. I knew it then too. I knew God was more important than everything else put together, but I still ended up slipping away sometimes. I think part of this is because the Holy Spirit is a gentleman. He won't push or shove His way into a person's life, but the enemy will. The enemy will try to make everything you think about against God's will, so you can't follow His great plan for your life. Thankfully, God's grace is sufficient to get you through any hard time you may be having (2 Corinthians 12:9), and as James 4:8 says, if we draw near to God, He will draw near to us! This is why by now I've gotten much better at focusing on God and keeping Him first. It's in a place of obedience to Him that we can most easily mold ourselves into fertile soil for the Word of God. The fertile soil are those people who hear the Word of God and live it out, allowing it to produce thirty, sixty, and a hundred fold in their lives. You could say they let the Word affect their lives to such a degree that it changes each and every area for the better. I try to be like that. I want to respond to the Word with action. I want to be a doer of it, and not a hearer only (James 1:22). I think we should all strive to let the word of God change us and develop us into the people He has created us to be. A big key in being able to do this is giving the Word of God credibility, and putting what it says above all else. Becoming good soil can be a process, and take some time. Don't be discouraged, though. You can be well on your way to doing this by realizing how much you need God and developing a hunger for Him. Then, when you come across His Word, you will consume it, and allow it to change you and all that is yours continually.