Change of Heart – Part 4: The Good Soil

Change of Heart – Part 4: The Good Soil

The Good Soil
Change of Heart – Part 4
May 22, 23, 2021
Steve Tanner

(Series Key Verse) ”And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart.” Ezekiel 36:26 (p.655)

The Parable of the Farmer Scattering Seed

Matthew 13:1-23

  • The Farmer: Jesus
  • The Seed: God’s Word
  • The Soil: My Response

“Still other seeds fell on fertile soil, and they produced a crop that was thirty, sixty, and even a hundred times as much as had been planted!” Matthew 13:8 (p.744)

”The seed that fell on good soil represents those who truly hear and understand God’s word and produce a harvest of thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as had been planted!” Matthew 13:23 (p.744)

  • Nurture And Fight For My Faith.

Nurturing my faith will help me:

  1. Fight the good fight.

“Fight the good fight for the true faith. Hold tightly to the eternal life to which God has called you, which you have declared so well before many witnesses.” 1 Timothy 6:12 (p.913)

”Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.” James 1:2 (p.930)

  1. Finish the race.

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful.” 2 Timothy 4:7 (p.915)

”Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground…” Ephesians 6:13 (p.898)

Next Step: _____ I will Nurture And Fight For My Faith this week by taking one tangible action to help me be more ready to receive and follow God’s Word.

  • Some ideas:
    • Read my Bible consistently
    • Pray regularly
    • Talk to another person about Jesus
    • Serve in Jesus’ name
    • Give
  • And if you want to know more about developing some of these actions, join us for our NEXT Series, “Make it a Habit,” beginning memorial Weekend.

Discussion/Groups Guide from the Weekend TalkFrom the Weekend Talk of May 22-23, 2021
Change of Heart – Part 4: The Good Soil

Use this guide to discuss the Weekend Talk with your family or friends.

When Lif­e Groups are in session they use questions like these to go deeper into what we talked about on the weekend. Find out more about Groups (in person and online) at alivechurch.com/groups.

Conversation Starters

  • Do you have a green thumb? What has been your best “crop”?
  • Have you ever planted a few seeds in the garden or greenhouse and been surprised how many plants have grown?
    • Why did they grow so well?
  • Have you played a game like Risk or Monopoly and each time you rolled the dice, you seemed to get exactly what you needed to win the round/get to where you wanted to be?  You felt on top of the world?
  • Have you ever discipled someone on a one to one or as a Life Group Leader or perhaps a youth or kids class teacher and then watched that person go on to do wonderful things for God – even years later?
    • Were you still praying for them after all the years since the original input?  (some ‘seeds’ take a long time to germinate!

Qui­­ck Review

Looking back at your Talk Notes, was there anything you heard in the service that stood out, challenged, or maybe even confused you?

Discussion Starters from the Weekend Talk

Refer to the Talk Notes and related Bible verses from this Weekend’s Talk Notes.

  • Series key verse: Ezekiel 36:26 (p.655)
    • In what area of your life do you need to have Jesus soften your heart?
  • Read Matthew 13:1-23 (p.744)
    • The Farmer: Jesus
    • The Seed: God’s Word 
    • The Heart: Our Response – the difference in the results is in the soil.

In his Weekend Talk Pastor Steve Tanner challenged us to…

Nurture And Fight For My Faith.

  • Nurture And Fight For My Faith.
    • Nurturing my faith will help me:
  • Fight the good fight.
    • See 1 Timothy 6:12 (p.913)
      • Have you ever felt like you were in a spiritual fight?
    • See James 1:2 (p.930)
      • When have you faced an obstacle or challenge and then later recognized how much God was using it to help you grow?
    • Have you ever thought about what’s makes good soil? Or have you tried to improve the soil by adding nutrients or fertilizers?
    • If a farmer or gardener does not look after the soil it can become bad soil: it can become compacted, have weeds, etc. In the same way, we need to feed/maintain our spiritual lives with God’s word and purpose.
      • Look at Philippians 2:3-18 (p900), Paul encourages us to work hard and to have Christ’s attitude to others and we will see much fruit. When we hold fast to God we will be doing his work and the blessings will flow.
  • Finish the race.
    • See 2 Timothy 4:7 (p.915)
    • See Ephesians 6:13 (p.898)
    • Athletes spend years training for a shot of Olympic glory. There are failures on the way, sacrifices made and heartache – and there is only one gold medal, and one winner.
      • But with Christ we are all winners, but we all have to compete, and that means spending time with God in His word and in His Family – Prayer, studying his word and having active fellowship in the church. 
      • Being a follower of Christ is an active lifestyle not a passive one –
        • See Matthew 18:19-20 (p760) and John 20:21 (p829).
        • Jesus sends us!

Next Step: _____ I will Nurture And Fight For My Faith this week by taking one tangible action to help me be more ready to receive and follow God’s Word.

  • Some ideas:
    • Read my Bible consistently
    • Pray regularly
    • Talk to another person about Jesus
    • Serve in Jesus’ name
    • Give

And if you want to know more about developing some of these actions, join us for our NEXT Series, “Make it a Habit,” beginning memorial Weekend.

Use the link on the app or go to your Connection Card at www.alivechurch.com/card to indicate you are taking this Next Step so that we can pray for you.

* The Life Transformation Bible is the New Living Translation of the Bible, including many useful tools to help you better understand God’s Word, including our own Alive Church Life Transformation Discipleship Plan. They are available FREE. Let us know if you’d like to have one. We also have a Kids Edition of the Bible, as well.