The God of Prepositions

“Again he began to teach beside the sea. And a very large crowd gathered about him, so that he got into a boat and sat in it on the sea, and the whole crowd was beside the sea on the land. And he was teaching them many things in parables, and in his teaching he said to them: ‘Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow.  And as he sowed, some seed fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured it.  Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did not have much soil, and immediately it sprang up, since it had no depth of soil. And when the sun rose, it was scorched, and since it had no root, it withered away.  Other seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain. And other seeds fell into good soil and produced grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.'” Mark 4:1-8

He is beside, into, in, on, and the crowds were about and beside. Prepositions tuck in close upon and around our Savior and the people He taught, depicting the proximity and activity involved in His bent to scatter the Word like seed. And the Word moves with prepositions too: along, on, among, and into, each determining whether it would wither or flourish. Our ubiquitous Lord is always among us, both beside and within, and His presence activates our response to His truth being sown.

What prepositions describe our proximity and attachment to Jesus? Do we skirt around Him at a distance, or gather about and regularly kneel before Him? What effort do we make to walk beside Him, and how willing are we to bring our will under His and rest upon His promises? The words He provides in language translate to spiritual commitment when appropriated with deliberate resolve. Do we so apply each aspect of what we read?

And how do we receive the living Word? Does it merely fall along the path of our day, ignored, then gone? Does it drop only on our ears without entering in, perhaps making a quick start at instruction or conviction, but soon replaced with more intriguing ideas? Do we take in the Word, but equally among other messages, responsibilities, cares, and activities, so it never takes precedence and truly transforms our thinking and desires? Or would we welcome it into good, pure, soft soil of early unfettered heart, to sink in, take root, and spread into every cranny of our thought and day? What will we do to prepare our heart soil for His living Word, so it can grow and increase in and through us? (Hebrews 4:12)

“Sing them over again to me,
Wonderful words of life;
Let me more of their beauty see,
Wonderful words of life;
Words of life and beauty
Teach me faith and duty.
Beautiful words, wonderful words,
Wonderful words of life;
Beautiful words, wonderful words,
Wonderful words of life.” ~P.P. Bliss (1874)

My Lord, thank You for living within me. Please tuck in all around my hours, and cause Your holy Word to soak deep into my soul to influence all I say and do so I may bring manifold glory to your Name.

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