This is from the Parable of the Sower, where the farmer sows the Word…the Logos…the Word of God, onto a hard-packed path. The seed just sits on top of the surface, unable to germinate and grow because of the hardpan – the unbroken subsoil beneath. To have a hardened heart towards the Gospel is to have an indifference towards the things of God…or to have an unfeeling conscience. So how can we pray for that person? We can ask the Lord to plow up that hard soil of rebellion in their life… that the Word of God may germinate and flourish there.
Are you walking around with a hardened heart? When we’ve been hurt over and over again, our only recourse is to protect our heart…our inner person. We put up a wall of callousness and apathy so no one can hurt us again. It’s effective, but makes us appear uncaring and insensitive to others. It’s also really lonely within those walls…but we’re too afraid and distrustful to allow anyone in…so instead, we put on the mask of indifference.
But you may also be walking around with a hardened heart from sin. Everything is going great… you can make it on your own…you don’t need the Lord. But obstinately refusing God will only lead to destruction.