Fallow Ground, Cussing, and Beautiful Spiritual Growth

Is my heart fallow ground? If I don’t plant anything, I’m not going to see anything grow. Zero plus zero still equals zero. #BloggerVoicesNetwork #BVNetworkParty #ThrivingInChrist #blogger #wisdom #spiritualgrowth #Christian #blog #tongue #cursing #fallowgroundSometimes it’s easier to open my heart to God when I’m at church. But what about after that? What about the rest of the days of the week?

If I open up my heart to God only at a worship service and nothing else, my heart becomes fallow. Fallow means inactive or barren.

Sow for yourselves righteousness; Reap in mercy; Break up your fallow ground, For it is time to seek the Lord, Till He comes and rains righteousness on you. Hosea 10:12 NKJV

Notice the phrase, “break up your fallow ground.” When a farmer cultivates his land, he must first plow the ground to prepare it for sowing and then plant the seeds. If the farmer plows the land but doesn’t plant anything there, it’s considered fallow ground.

This makes me wonder, does my heart become fallow?

Notice the verse also says to “sow for yourselves righteousness.” It sounds like I have a responsibility to put something in my heart. If I don’t plant anything, I’m not going to see anything grow. Zero plus zero still equals zero.

Spiritual Growth 101

It’s as if the ground is my heart, and I need to put truth in there that shows me how to live in a way that’s pleasing to the Lord.

That reminds me of the parable of the Sower in Luke 8 where Jesus says, “the seed is the word of God” (Luke 8:11 NASB). It makes sense that I need to “plant” the “seed” of the Word of God in the “ground” of my heart.

If I plant seeds then I will get fruit, right? Plant the Word of God and you will get the Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). That means if fruit is going to come to maturity, I can’t ignore my sins. I must confess and forsake them (Proverbs 28:13). Just like a natural garden needs sunlight and water or it will die, the garden of my heart needs “light” and “water.”

Well, Jesus is the light of the world (John 8:12), and His light is going to shine on my darkness and expose my sin. Additionally, I need the water of the Word to wash me (Ephesians 5:26), and I need the power of the Holy Spirit to overcome (John 7:37-39).

Is my heart fallow ground? If I don’t plant anything, I’m not going to see anything grow. Zero plus zero still equals zero. Click to Tweet

For a Real-Life Example of This, Let Me Tell You How God Helped Me Tame My Tongue

Disclosure: I don’t think the subject of cursing needs to be a matter of division in the body of Christ, as controversial as it may be. I choose not to judge others. Today I’m simply sharing my personal testimony on the subject.

One day a couple of decades ago, I was reading James chapter three. It made me squirm a little, because I had read it before and sensed the Holy Spirit’s conviction about my mouth—but hadn’t done anything about it. I guess you could say my heart was fallow in this area. Then I got to verse ten:

From the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way. James 3:10 NASB

I’d be praying and worshipping God one day and then angry and cussing (which was never in front of anyone) on another. My mouth got me in trouble in other ways too, like saying what I thought without regard for hurting others.

God was clear with me; He wanted to tame my tongue and showed me it would take planting the Word in my heart. I didn’t always yield, but He would prick my heart when I was about to speak my mind. He took it even further and showed me the motive behind my mouth stemmed from sins like anger or pride. Nevertheless, His grace was present.

Is my heart fallow ground? If I don’t plant anything, I’m not going to see anything grow. Zero plus zero still equals zero.

From Fallow to Fruit

I needed to pull away from cussing, but I wasn’t ready yet. It was too hard, so I switched to the “darns” and “hecks” instead. Then I felt God pulling me away from those. Reluctantly, I obeyed. I created a word I could use, “cripe.” Yes, it was pretty hilarious. 🙂 After that, I felt God pulling me away from using my made-up word.

If something wrong came out of my mouth, right after I would repent to God, and say a verse that gave instructions for what I needed to be saying instead. He helped me tame my tongue through the power of the Holy Spirit.

My mouth is not 100% right 100% of the time, but I saw a lot of spiritual growth during that season. In place of speaking the way I had always done, I saw the fruit of love, peace, gentleness, etc. in my words popping up more and more.

So we need to allow the Husbandman to have His way in the garden of our heart. He will make a work of beautiful spiritual growth out of fallow ground.

Have you ever had the Lord lead you to give up something a little at a time?


The Best Posts on Evidence of Spiritual Growth

I asked members of the Blogger Voices Network to share posts that have evidence of spiritual growth in their lives and they delivered! Check out these great reads:

How to Form Positive Spiritual Self-Care Habits by Anita Ojeda

Are You Growing by Aminata Coote at Hebrews12Endurance

When You Don’t Have Enough by Lesley at Life in the Spacious Place

Pathway: Keep Moving Toward the Light by Gayl S. Wright

A Time to Sow New Seeds by Sarah Geringer

The Masks We Wear: A Journey to Authenticity by Refreshing Moments with Sharon

How I am Learning the 7 Pillars of Wisdom by Anne at God Who Are You

Use These Spiritual Disciplines to Grow Spiritually right here on KellyRBaker.com

Check out the best posts from members of the Blogger Voices Network on Evidence of Spiritual Growth. Click to Tweet

Bloggers of Christian faith are welcome to link up their faith based post on Friday’s at the Blogger Voices Network link up. BVN is for Christian women. Our heart is to “with one voice glorify God” (Romans 15:5-7) while we practice contentment and collaborate together. Interested? We’d love for you to join us. #network #linkup #faith #networking #contentment #interviews #collaboration #womeninministry #blogger #networkingideas #thrivinginchrist #women #networktips #community #Christian

The #BVNetworkParty is open to all Christian faith bloggers. The Blogger Voices Network is for Christian women. Our heart is to “with one voice glorify God” (Romans 15:5-7) while we practice contentment and collaborate together. Interested? Join via Facebook with this link.

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I sensed the Holy Spirit’s conviction about my mouth—but hadn’t done anything about it. I guess you could say my heart was fallow in this area. #BloggerVoicesNetwork #BVNetworkParty #ThrivingInChrist #blogger #wisdom #spiritualgrowth #Christian #blog #tongue #cursing #fallowground
In this post, I share my personal testimony on how God helped me tame my tongue. Included are the Best Posts on Evidence of Spiritual Growth from Members of the Blogger Voices Network #BloggerVoicesNetwork #BVNetworkParty #ThrivingInChrist #blogger #wisdom #spiritualgrowth #Christian #blog #tongue #cursing #fallowground

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19 Comments

  1. Your sweet testimony about God leading you bit by bit away from cussing demonstrates for me this morning the gentleness of God. He is so ready to meet us wherever we are and bends over backwards to continue in us the work which He has so graciously begun. Thank you for sharing your story with such grace.

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      Yes, He is gentle! He’s not holding a whip over our heads, as some like to believe. There is freedom in surrender to His ways.

  2. Kelly,
    I really appreciate your candor! Thanks for sharing how God not only revealed this sin to you, but through the Holy Spirit, changed your heart in this. So glad that I found you through the grace and truth linkup.

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      It seems like He is always purging me, but there’s always something good in the process. So blessed by your visit today, Shauna!

  3. Yes, I have had the Lord me to give something a little more time. If I’ve learned anything in my relationship with him is that His timing isn’t the same as mine. And that most things take longer than I think they should. Thank you for sharing your heart and your struggle.

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      That’s the truth! Thanks for stopping by Michelle! Have a great weekend!

  4. Loved reading this testimony to the power of God’s Word, patience and faithfulness to finish what he starts in us, Kelly.
    I feel there is always an area he is working on with me, that seems to be at the forefront more than others.
    So glad he walks with us as we slowly learn to strip off stuff that really doesn’t do us or anyone else good.
    I am in a place right now where I am weary from saying “the right thing” all the time, and so I am having to really slow down (sometimes get away from people for a moment) so I can get my thinking in order first. It’s not easy, and I know it can be done. The tongue is like that snowball effect where once it rolls, it keeps going. Eek, right?
    I know how I feel when I say what’s right, or even refrain when I need to.
    I need to remind myself of this versus how my insides feel after toxic words come out.
    To ask, “Why did they come out in the first place?”

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      Yes, He is getting to the root of things in us to pluck it out. We don’t need weeds growing in our heart. Thanks for your comment, friend.

  5. I am the worst offender of the “craps”, and “hecks”. My husband is always like, do you want your children saying that? Ouch…. convicted.

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      My husband and I have had that same conversation. Because we all know how little kids like to copy what they hear. Thanks for stopping by, Jessica.

  6. I think it’s amazing how the Holy Spirit keeps bringing up the same lessons through my favorite blogger friends like you Kelly. The fruit of the Spirit has been on my heart over and over this week. It’s Spiritual Growth 101, but why does it take us a lifetime to actually learn? And, then learn again and again…

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      Hi, Ann! I’m honored to be among your favorites. Spiritual growth takes time the same as maturity in the natural. We all need to understand that!

  7. Great post, Kelly! I am so in agreement with this: ” It makes sense that I need to “plant” the “seed” of the Word of God in the “ground” of my heart.”
    The word never returns void. If you plant it, it will grow!
    I also liked that you shared what James said about blessing and cursing coming from the same mouth. How awesomely God guided you through change!

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      Great to see your here, Jerralea! I love that verse in Isaiah you referenced. It’s been a long time favorite and goes nicely with this subject. 🙂

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Lauren!

  8. I love that God is so gentle and patient with us! I am constantly challenged to keep sowing and keep growing towards godliness. I am guilty of saying little comments that can be hurtful and insensitive. Then the Spirit reminds me to speak life and encouragement into people’s lives. Like James says, the tongue is not easy to tame.

    1. kellyrbaker says:

      I’m glad He is, too, Christine! He reminds me that our sowing will take time just like any tree that grows (Ps.1:3), so we just gotta keep at it.

  9. I struggle with anger towards my children and husband over petty things in the house – like being untidy and forgetful! Actually this is right on topic for me today! Although I don’t say words out loud, I certainly say them in my head and feel them in my heart. This morning I felt God asking me why I was so angry about a specific issue and it openend up my heart to repentance. He is such a gentle and faithful God who will never stop pursuing us and seeking our transformation.

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