Other seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain. (Mark 4:7 ESV)
No one likes thorns, right?
They’re sharp, prickly, and generally to be avoided. Weeds and thorns often go hand in hand, neither being the type of growth a gardener likes to see. However, as we continue in the book of Mark, Jesus reveals a surprise about these thorns.
It is written that “the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful” (Mark 4:18-19).
The thorns here represent the things in the world we care about, and are generally thought of as good or appealing.
Many of us spend our adult lives in pursuit of a bigger, better, more; and the list could go on indefinitely.
When we center our energy and focus on things other than Jesus and the Gospel, those good things become idols, they become “God things.”
They choke the life from our spirits and keep us from bearing fruit, useful and good (Galatians 5:22-23; Hebrews 6:7).
The point is this: in actuality, we like thorns, we like them a lot.
The problem we continually face is when, instead of using the things in our possession or the status our wealth grants us for the Kingdom, we use them for our kingdom.
At the center of our hearts should lie Jesus and His mission, and how He’s called us to serve Him. When we don’t live like this, we are in great danger of loving our thorns more than our God.
Read the story of the rich man in Mark 10, and work through clinging to Jesus instead of the cares of this world.