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Seeds of the Kingdom

The Word that Nourishes

by Richard Griffiths

24 February 2023

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Establish Your word to Your servant as that which produces reverence for You.
Psalm 119:38, NASB

Psalm 119 uses about a dozen different words for the word of God. Each one has a different emphasis, a different flavour. This one in Psalm 119:38 means the spoken word – something which you’ve heard.

I’m sure that you will have heard God speak to you. It may not have been audibly, but, as you’ve read the Bible, or listened to a talk, or read a book, or been praying, or just been thinking about things, something has impressed itself on you. Then you know in your spirit that God’s been telling you something.

In the fields around where we live, the autumn-sown crops are making the fields green once again. Most will be harvested during the summer. But not all. Some have been sown because they nourish the soil. In the Parable of the Sower, Jesus likens the word to seed that’s been sown for a harvest. But God’s word is also sown into our lives to ‘nourish the soil’.

It will only do that if it is ‘established’ – well-rooted in our hearts.

It’s so easy, isn’t it, to skip through parts of the Bible that we know well, as if God won’t have anything new to say to us. And it’s also very easy, when God has spoken to us (whether through the Bible or in some other way), to go on to the next thing, without giving it time to get ‘established’ and well-rooted in our heart, where it will begin to provide the nourishment and change that we need.

In his letter, James says this: ‘humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you’ (James 1:21). It’s almost as though he had today’s verse open in front of him. The word James uses for ‘save’ is the one that is also translated as ‘heal’. The implanted word is meant to put right what is wrong, and to nourish what is right, in our inner being. When we give God the time and space to establish His word in our hearts, He cleanses us from sin. He corrects ungodly attitudes, and heals the damage that these have done, and the harm others have inflicted on us. That’s what healing is – putting everything right, not just in our physical bodies, but in our inner being: our human spirit, our mind, our will, and our emotions.

It’s the soil that has been well-nourished which produces a good crop. It’s the heart that has been well-nourished which will be truly fruitful.

Richard Griffiths When Richard retired from full-time Anglican ministry in Chichester in 2009, he and his wife, Sue, moved to Northumberland. He joined the ministry team at Ellel Grange in 2011, where he and Sue regularly ministered at healing retreats. They are now helping on the "Explore" team. They greatly enjoy walking in the beautiful Northumberland countryside and along the coast. Richard loves seeing God bringing people into a strong personal relationship with Him as their Father and the healing that comes with it.

 

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