“Listen and hear my voice; pay attention and hear what I say” [Isaiah 28:23]
I remember when I was a young girl and helped my dad prepare a seed box to plant seeds. First I filled the sifter with soil and then began to sift or shake the soil through the sifter. Only the fine good soil landed in the seed box; unwanted stones or larger clods of soil were left in the sifter to be thrown aside. Once the soil was sifted the seed could be sown into the soil and grow beautiful healthy bedding plants.
This is a picture of life being sifted by the Holy Spirit. The soil is the heart of man and the sifter the hand of God. Day by day He sifts through the thoughts, ideas, suggestions, recommendations and His very action upon the soul of man removes the unwanted debris and creates a seed bed that will bring forth a rich harvest.
Man often either rejects new ways, thoughts and ideas or as the preverbal saying goes, throws the baby out with the bath water or he acts presumptuously without thought and creates an Ishmael that becomes a snare to his walk with God.
I don’t sift soil any longer, those were childhood projects, but I see the same thing in my kitchen when preparing to cook dry beans – I must sort through, sift out and take the time to discard little rocks that unknowingly found their way into the beans.
What’s the principle? When facing many and varied thoughts, ideas, recommendations and suggestions – wait, take time, listen and allow the Holy Spirit to sift and reveal the truth. and the truth shall set you free from all indecision. What you grow and see develop will be rich and bring much glory to God.
Further Reading: Isaiah 28:23-29; Romans 8:5-8