This is a Sunday morning chilling out contemplative follow up to an earlier post. I use my blog for processing what’s going on, getting the deep watch-your-step thoughts out so they don’t make a mess. Feel free to leave your own comments, suggestions, answers – I’ve got more questions than anything else, so the interaction can only be a good thing, right?
I was in Luke 12 (ever notice that the crowds are trampling each other in the first verse of this chapter? where does that fit in here?), and it struck me that we lean heavily on our reading of "requirements" into what Jesus said. There’s another part right before that piece that sticks out to me this morning:
“Stay dressed for action and keep your lamps burning, and be like men who are waiting for their master to come home from the wedding feast, so that they may open the door to him at once when he comes and knocks. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes. Truly, I say to you, he will dress himself for service and have them recline at table, and he will come and serve them. If he comes in the second watch, or in the third, and finds them awake, blessed are those servants! But know this, that if the master of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have left his house to be broken into. You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.”
– Luke 12:35-40, esv
This is really similar to Jesus’ parable in Matthew 25, where the ten virgins need to wait for the bridegroom – when five of them have enough oil and the others don’t, the latter group gets left behind. And we take it, for the most part, as a story of the end times. I’m not so sure that’s the only application, however, when coupled with this other passage of servants waiting for a master to call them into duty. What if, more than a story of being ready for the second coming and making sure you’re not "left behind" – what if instead, it’s a challenge to make sure you’re ready whenever the master/bridegroom comes to interact?
Basically, when Jesus calls, am I ready? Do I have enough "oil in my lamp" to follow His prompt and call? Am I awake and alert enough to sense him coming "like a thief in the night" or "in season and out of season"? I think we put so many eggs in the basket of salvation and eternal life that we’ve missed it, that we’ve let our lamps go empty, when it comes to following Him and living with Him in the day-to-day of right now. Right now, He hasn’t come back like that. At the same time, though, He comes back every time I think of Him, every time I feel His prompting, every time I see Him in the people around me, moving and doing whatever He’s about in the stuff around me.
There’s no need for oil in my lamp when everything is lit up. And there’s no need to wait for the master when you’re in his constant and total presence. But right now, in a the darkness and in his virtual absence, maybe we’re missing something important by not being ready, by not having our wicks wet.
Time to head to church – any pushback? What else am I not seeing?