“Then the kingdom of heaven will be like this. Ten bridesmaids took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. When the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them; but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps.” – Matthew 25:1-4 NRSV
When contemplating my word for the year, Ready, I thought of this passage. I felt like I was in a period of waiting in my personal and professional life. In fact, I was in a period of readiness.
“Is it time to go yet?”
With two sons (5 and 7), I hear these words a lot in our house. Most of the time, the answer is “no”. When finally it is time to go to whatever fun activity my kids are anticipating, I will inevitably find them engrossed in a game, muddy, or missing their shoes. They have been waiting, but they’re not ready.
Waiting is inactive, passing time.
Ready is active, watchful, prepared.
At the end of the parable, the foolish bridesmaids miss out on the wedding feast, because they had to go buy more oil. They weren’t ready, they were just waiting.
If it feels like not much is going on, ask your self if you’re waiting or ready:
- Are you actively looking for what God is doing?
- Are you using your time for preparation?
- Are you spending the time mentally “awake” or “asleep”?
Are you ready to lead a small-group Bible study?