Thursday, March 25

Stay ready!

Scripture: Deuteronomy 13-14, Matthew 25

Matthew 25:10 But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut.

Matthew 25:13 Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.

Observation

Jesus tells three stories that each illustrate a different aspect of readiness to meet God.  You must be ready at all times; you must use the gifts God gave you; you must care for poor and hurting.  

In the first story, the wedding attendants who were ready went in; those who weren’t ready were shut out.  The key was staying ready, preparing ahead, rather than trying to get ready at the last moment. 

You don’t get ready; you stay ready.  This means keeping your relationship with God current.  

Application

You will stand before God when Jesus returns or when you die, whichever comes first—and you really don’t know when either will happen.  So you want to stay ready.  You want to stand before a God you’ve been talking with every day, a God you know and love, a God you’ve been serving.  You won’t have time to scramble at the last moment and get ready.  

Stay ready by keeping your relationship with Jesus current—every day. 

Stay ready by using your gifts to serve God and people—every day.

Stay ready by caring for the poor and hurting—every day.

This is not fear-based.  This is simply reality.  Great athletes understand this.  They stay in shape, keep their skills sharp, so that when the coach calls on them, they’re ready to go in.  If they think, “I won’t get in the game, so why bother practicing,” then when the coach calls, it will be too late.  They will have missed their chance.  

Stay ready!

Prayer: Lord, help us to live ready, to stay ready—always ready to meet You because we have a current relationship with You, and are using our gifts, and caring for the poor and hurting.