God Loves and Is A Cheerful Giver 


Then He taught them many things by parables, and said to them in His teaching: “Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. And it happened, as he sowed, that some seed fell by the wayside; and the birds of the air came and devoured it. Some fell on stony ground, where it did not have much earth; and immediately it sprang up because it had no depth of earth. But when the sun was up it was scorched, and because it had no root it withered away. And some seed fell among thorns; and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no crop. But other seed fell on good ground and yielded a crop that sprang up, increased and produced: some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some a hundred.”  (Mark 4:2-8)


St Gregory of Nyssa notes that in the above parable, the sower liberally and generously distributes his good seed to all, whether or not the soil is good, because of his love for all. The sower, does not discriminate against those soils not likely to produce fruit, but rather freely distributes the same good seed to all. The fault is not with the sower or his seed, the problems are found in the different types of soil which represent different people. It is not God who prohibits people from becoming spiritually fruitful.


St Gregory says:

In a parable (Matthew 13: 3-23; Luke 8: 5-15), the Lord said to the crowds that the sower of the word does not plant solely in the good heart. Even if a heart be stony, even if it be overgrown with thorns, even if it be alongside the path and trodden down, he cast the seed of the word into them all because of his love for humankind.  (HOMILIES ON THE SONG OF SONGS, p 57)

The Lord does not withhold His grace from any. It is up to us to recognize whether or not God’s seed can grow in our hearts. If so, we will produce spiritual fruit for God. If not, we are given that opportunity to prepare our hearts to be fertile ground for God’s word—tilling our hearts by repentance, humility, love, and forgiveness.


Each one must do as he has made up his mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. (2 Corinthians 9:7)