Mark 4:5

Some fell on rocky ground, where it had not much soil, and, because the soil wasn’t deep, sprang up at once;

rocky soil is not mature
shallow     granular
lacking earthworms
good for one crop
soon depleted

it is exciting
to turn a quick profit
but slow and steady
return customers
is long-term gain

individualized capitalism
has its built-in failure
favoring money over labor
a division fomenting revolution
nouveau riche is juvenile

As with all good intentions, some don’t even make it to the drawing table, much less move to next levels of implementation and finally payback.

Sometimes the first blush of inspiration or first crush, puppy love, sets us all aglow. Our energy is high and expectations higher. This is a grand moment when we can see we are ahead of everyone else.

The poor can see themselves as successful entrepreneurs, if only they had a break. Their fantasy: surely this is the year when everything is all going to break my way.

Can you remember your own best plan that took off like a house on fire? Well, maybe that isn’t the best image for soon you will be without a house. At least it garnered a lot of affirmation from those around you and even a first draft was looking good.

Don’t we wish that this story would move more quickly! While it may be our contemporary visual pacing of television and movies that drives us ever faster, there are other factors as well. One of them spans the generations—our real agenda.

Our ulterior motives keep us from doing simple, active listening. We keep thinking about what we are going to say next. How we can shine. In the story of Mark we have come to expect another healing right around the next urgently turned corner. And it may be mine!

The quicker Jesus can finish up this shaggy-seed tale, the quicker we’ll be back to the action.

Yes, seeds can grow quickly in shallow soil. So do our desires. To change metaphors for a moment, this part of the story is about boom-towns that spring up overnight to benefit special someones more than ordinary laborers who are here today and gone tomorrow.