Brenda Groves

On the small farm that I grew up on we did a lot of planting. I remember following my dad around as we weeded, checked for bugs and, of course, tasted some of the produce. 

My dad was especially fond of tomatoes. Every now and then he would pluck a good ripe one, pull out his pocket knife and slice the juicy tomato in half. 

Then he'd fish around in his overalls for a small salt shaker that he carried to dust the tomato with extra flavor. 

But it wasn't until just a few years ago that I learned the strong resemblance that a tomato has with a human heart. 

A tomato has four chambers and is red just like a heart. A tomato is loaded with lycopene that is pure heart and blood food. And of course a tomato carries seeds ... and so does our hearts. 

Since we are approaching the heart of tomato season, I would like to dig up some seeds of truths about our hearts. 

For the purpose of this column, I will compare the Bible to a "Farmer's Almanac" of our hearts, and it declares that, "As a man thinks in his heart, so is he." Our hearts can think from the seeds that we meditate on day after day. 

And these thoughts will yield a crop. That is when we begin to (taste) experience the produce we have planted. 

Just like planting a garden. Our hearts are the soil and they are not fickle; they will grow whatever seeds we plant in them. 

What kind of crop do you want? 

Bitterness? Unforgiveness? Hate? Greed? Or peace, love, joy, prosperity? The choice is ours. 

"For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies." 

" ... looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled." 

"As in water face reflects face, So a man's heart reveals the man." 

Did you know that in the early ’60s ancient date palm seeds were discovered in a dry, sheltered container during excavations at Herod the Great's palace. When the seeds were placed in the right environment one of the seeds sprouted. This seed was extinct for over 1,800 years, yet was still able to not just survive, but thrive. 

After I was born again, I failed to renew my mind in God's word so my roots didn't grow very deep in the Lord. I knew some truths and scriptures, but for several years these seeds just lay dormant in my heart. 

And even though Christ had changed me on the inside, I didn't see much change on the outside, until I made a commitment to put God first in my life. 

Amazingly, by immersing myself in God's word, over time those seeds, mixed with fertilizer and watered by the power of the Holy Spirit, love started to grow, and this produced a deeper relationship in Christ Jesus. And since faith works through love, I started seeing the crops of health, prosperity, restored relationships, emotional stability. 

The seeds were there the whole time in the Bible, but that’s where they lay, in the book, dormant, waiting for me to plant them in my heart. I had to open the book and read it with my mind and my heart. Then "seed, time and harvest." 

" ... For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks." 

Jesus said, "If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water. Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me." 

So I pray we will plant the word of God in all of our hearts so we will experience a growth spurt in the coming months that will produce an abundance of love, health, prosperity and hope in Christ Jesus. 

But what does it say? 

“The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart' (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved, for with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation." 

Romans 10:8-10; John 7:37- 38, 14:1; Proverbs 6:14, 23:7, 27:19; 1 Samuel 16:7; Jer. 17:9- 10; Ezekiel 11:19-20; Col. 3:23; Psalm 7:9; Mal. 4:6; Luke 21:26; Phil 4:7; Col. 3:15; Heb. 12:15; Matt. 12:34 

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