The seed of the word is sown in the earth,
scattered far and wide by the divine Husbandman,
who travels continually throughout the land,
implanting this fecundating gift in every receptive heart.

But such openness, the heart’s readiness, admits of degrees,
for it takes vigilance and devotion, and humble reverence,
to receive the word truly—like a little child—
so that it may sink deep, take root, and grow.

Some there are for whom the effort is too much, to truly understand,
and the seed is soon snatched away by the evil one
and fails to bring forth its inherent, beautiful, rich fruit,
a cursory glance, deaf ears, a mind that won’t understand, a hardened heart.

Some there are who hear with joy, and understand,
but here too there are little or no roots,
and suffering and tribulations—birth pangs they should be—
lead the heart rather to fall away from faith and love.

Some there are who receive the seed of the word,
but it does not grow and mature, blossoming freely,
because of superficial preoccupations, suffocating things,
many gods that squeeze God out of the heart.

But the gift and invitation for each of us
is to be soft, rich, and clean soil, fertile earth,
offering itself to heaven’s gift, fructifying in pure grace,
and bringing forth in us the beauty of eternal Love.

Do we care to give this response—the most pressing of our life?
To be a space of receptivity for God’s gift,
for the word of love he speaks to us, implanting in the soul
the Presence that comes to us secretly, veiled but true.

This gift irradiates, touches, heals, and transforms us,
when we consent to stay awake and watch with him,
to open ourselves to that which he bears within,
and which he gives prodigally, squandering himself for us.

For he is the divine Husbandman sowing seeds—
and what is a Husbandman but one who weds the earth,
who seeks to espouse himself to every human Heart?
A heart soft, malleable, and wet with Love’s dew.

Let the grace in us, the Spirit’s receptivity,
respond to the grace coming from without—the Word—
and may the two be united in a fruitful bond,
and in the joy of encounter and enduring union.

And let us not forget, for a moment, this One
who in that Garden so many years ago, and on that Cross,
pouring out on the ground great drops of blood,
penetrated our earth with the divine Life and Love.

This pouring out in Love’s agony and ecstasy,
is the gift, not of something external, peripheral,
but the surrender to us, earth raised to divine adoption,
of the very Self of the divine Husbandman, and Friend.

Jesus, let not these drops of blood and life
fall to the ground without being lovingly received;
let not your Word, your Sacrament,
penetrate a heart cold and careless of the Mystery.

Rather, may love respond to Love,
by Love itself both awakened and sustained,
until this mutual indwelling, this fecundation,
gives birth at the end to consummation,
to the eternal union of Lover and beloved, inseparably one.