Focusing the Gospel
Key words and phrases: seed fell on rich soil, hundred or sixty or thirty-fold, understand with their hearts, be converted, I heal them, bears fruit
To the point: Both in the parable itself and in Jesus' explanation of it, he in- dicates that seeds falling on rich soil do not all produce the same abundance—some thirty-, some sixty-, some a hundredfold. God cares less about quantity produced and more about growth and Life coming to fruition. As we take in God's word with understanding hearts and come to conversion and receive healing, God actually gives us more than even a hundredfold. God gives us fullness of Life forever.
Connecting the Gospel …
… to the First Reading: The First Reading gives us confidence that God's “word shall … achieve the end for which [God] sent it.” The end is that we produce fruit.
… to experience: Every year farmers sow seed in hope of a harvest, knowing full well that drought, storm, insects, etc., can bring it all to ruin. But it is the hope of a harvest—no matter how abundant—that warrants the effort.