I am not very good at growing plants, and it is for one major reason. I do not remember to water them. Plants are not like pets, who let you know when they are hungry or thirsty. I presume children do the same thing, letting you know when they are hungry or thirsty. But plants just remain in the pot, making no noise even though they are dying. Too often, by the time I have realized the plant needed to be watered, it was already too late. The plant was dead.
Imagine what a great plant growing career I could have had if I had simply been more watchful. Who knows? I might even have become a famous botanist. But the truth is I was not simply attentive enough to the demands of plant growing (and the needs of the plants) to be much good at growing plants.
It can be the same way with the spiritual life too. We can become so wrapped up in other things that we do not give the necessary attention to God. We could miss the “shoot sprouting from the stump of Jesse.” We could be forgetful when it came to doing the things necessary to see the wonderful possibilities before us because of what God can do. I do not know if the Kingdom of God is quite fully realized enough for the circumstances described in the first reading. (Though I can see a wolf inviting a lamb for dinner.)