Jesus relates the parable of the sower to those who are willing to listen. In this story, the seeds represent Jesus’ words and the promise of the Kingdom of God and the soil is the soul in which it is “planted.” It is the kind of heart that hears his words.
The seeds were spread on different types of ground: on the open path, the rocky ground, among the thorns and on fertile soil. These are the different types of hearers of his words. The first hearers, the closed and prejudiced hearers won’t even hear the words. They have closed their hearts to what God has to say. The second hearers are the shallow hearers. They hear the words but could care less on what is being said. The third hearers are the ready but distracted and unfocused hearers. They hear the words, care about what is said and may actually contemplate on their meaning but then something happens and they forget God’s words because they become preoccupied with something else. And finally, there are the fourth hearers. They are truly Jesus’ target audience when he chose to speak in parables. Fr. Keating, SJ’s description says it all as to what these hearers have that make them the perfect “soul” to speak to. They are those with “open minds and open hearts.” God’s words are what we need to hear, comprehend and then hopefully, to follow.
Do you hear his words? Have you given your “yes” to him? What kind of hearer are you?