If a grain of wheat falls on the ground and dies, it yields a rich harvest
Among those who went up to worship at the festival were some Greeks. These approached Philip, who came from Bethsaida in Galilee, and put this request to him, ‘Sir, we should like to see Jesus.’ Philip went to tell Andrew, and Andrew and Philip together went to tell Jesus. Jesus replied to them:
‘Now the hour has come
for the Son of Man to be glorified.
I tell you, most solemnly,
unless a wheat grain falls on the ground and dies,
it remains only a single grain;
but if it dies,
it yields a rich harvest.
Anyone who loves his life loses it;
anyone who hates his life in this world
will keep it for the eternal life.
If a man serves me, he must follow me,
wherever I am, my servant will be there too.
If anyone serves me, my Father will honour him.
Now my soul is troubled.
What shall I say:
Father, save me from this hour?
But it was for this very reason that I have come to this hour.
Father, glorify your name!’
A voice came from heaven, ‘I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.’ People standing by, who heard this, said it was a clap of thunder; others said, ‘It was an angel speaking to him.’ Jesus answered, ‘It was not for my sake that this voice came, but for yours.
‘Now sentence is being passed on this world;
now the prince of this world is to be overthrown.
And when I am lifted up from the earth,
I shall draw all men to myself.’
By these words he indicated the kind of death he would die.
Source: Jerusalem Bible
Catechism of the Catholic Church
Facing difficulties in prayer
2729 The habitual difficulty in prayer is distraction. It can affect words and their meaning in vocal prayer; it can concern, more profoundly, him to whom we are praying, in vocal prayer (liturgical or personal), meditation, and contemplative prayer. To set about hunting down distractions would be to fall into their trap, when all that is necessary is to turn back to our heart: for a distraction reveals to us what we are attached to, and this humble awareness before the Lord should awaken our preferential love for him and lead us resolutely to offer him our heart to be purified. Therein lies the battle, the choice of which master to serve.
2730 In positive terms, the battle against the possessive and dominating self requires vigilance, sobriety of heart. When Jesus insists on vigilance, he always relates it to himself, to his coming on the last day and every day: today. The bridegroom comes in the middle of the night; the light that must not be extinguished is that of faith: “‘Come,’ my heart says, ‘seek his face!'”
2731 Another difficulty, especially for those who sincerely want to pray, is dryness. Dryness belongs to contemplative prayer when the heart is separated from God, with no taste for thoughts, memories, and feelings, even spiritual ones. This is the moment of sheer faith clinging faithfully to Jesus in his agony and in his tomb. “Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if dies, it bears much fruit.”18 If dryness is due to the lack of roots, because the word has fallen on rocky soil, the battle requires conversion.
A psalm of Asaph. The LORD, the God of gods, has spoken and summoned the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting.
From Zion God shines forth. perfect in beauty.
Our God comes and will not be silent! Devouring fire precedes, storming fiercely round about.
God summons the heavens above and the earth to the judgment of his people:
“Gather my faithful ones before me, those who made a covenant with me by sacrifice.”
The heavens proclaim divine justice, for God alone is the judge. Selah
“Listen, my people, I will speak; Israel, I will testify against you; God, your God, am I.
Not for your sacrifices do I rebuke you, nor for your holocausts, set before me daily.
I need no bullock from your house, no goats from your fold.
For every animal of the forest is mine, beasts by the thousands on my mountains.
I know every bird of the heavens; the creatures of the field belong to me.
Were I hungry, I would not tell you, for mine is the world and all that fills it.
Do I eat the flesh of bulls or drink the blood of goats?
Offer praise as your sacrifice to God; fulfill your vows to the Most High.
Then call on me in time of distress; I will rescue you, and you shall honor me.”
But to the wicked God says: “Why do you recite my commandments and profess my covenant with your lips?
You hate discipline; you cast my words behind you!
When you see thieves, you befriend them; with adulterers you throw in your lot.
You give your mouth free rein for evil; you harness your tongue to deceit.
You sit maligning your own kin, slandering the child of your own mother.
When you do these things should I be silent? Or do you think that I am like you? I accuse you, I lay the charge before you.
“Understand this, you who forget God, lest I attack you with no one to rescue.
Those who offer praise as a sacrifice honor me; to the obedient I will show the salvation of God.”
Source: The New American Bible