When someone wants to grow a garden, they don’t just walk outside, throw seeds on the ground and walk away. An experienced gardener knows the first and most important step in creating a proper garden is to prepare the soil. To do that, the gardener has to till the ground, and may have to remove rocks or roots that have gotten stuck there over time. Next, the gardener will add good things to the soil like compost, to infuse it with nutrients. Throughout this process, the gardener has to have patience and remember that all of this preparation will create a fruitful and beautiful garden.
In the Parable of the Sower, we focus on the part of the story where the sower (Jesus) plants the seeds (the Word of God) in the ground (our hearts.) We know we must have hearts filled with “good soil” to receive God’s word, but we often forget that God himself is the one preparing our hearts to receive it! He heals our hearts by removing the “rocks” and “roots” that don’t belong there. He gives us opportunities to practice virtue, to resist temptation, to love our neighbors, and to be more faithful. With each little “yes,” our hearts become a fertile ground for the word of God to grow and flourish.
How is God preparing the soil in your heart? What opportunities to practice virtue and love has he placed in your life?
Have you ever wondered if there’s a patron saint of vacations…. In this episode we talk about the quest to find this elusive patron saint, transitions in life, and the importance of margin in our lives.