Mar 4:10 And when he was alone, they that were about him with the twelve asked of him the parable.
Mar 4:11 And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables:
Mar 4:12 That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them.
— Mark 4: 10-12
If you buy fresh walnuts, you will need to crack the outside shell in order to get to the actual walnut. It isn’t always easy to break the shell though. Sometimes you must persist and crack the shell with a different tool, or making multiple cracks instead of a single large one. The point is, if you persist, eventually you get to the nut.
Now, imagine a parable is like a walnut. For the apostles who Jesus was addressing in this event, He stated that for them (the apostles), “Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the Kingdom of God” and there is good reason for this. They were chosen by Jesus and were PERSISTING with Him everyday to learn more. Asking for help, as the apostles did in this story, is an example of persistence to get to the nut, or in this case, an understanding of the parable of the sower.
Conversely, for people who are not serious about learning the teachings of Jesus Christ, they would just hear the story and think they understand it, but they never got through the shell. They never would learn the mystery of the Kingdom of God because they do not persist. Remember the kingdom of God is taken by violence (John 4). Persisting is a form of this ‘violence’ – the unquenchable thirst to enter and learn about the teachings of Jesus and the Kingdom of God.
Therefore, I beseech you to persist in learning the gospel. It will speak to your heart if you do, and give you wisdom that other people have not earned the privilege to know.