"Since the bridegroom was long delayed, they all became drowsy and fell asleep." (Mt 25:5)
Saturday, November 7, 2020
Today’s gospel has a very consoling verse for people like me and many older people. Matthew writes that the ten virgins "all became drowsy and fell asleep.” Since I am an early to bed person, the thought of staying up very late waiting for “the bridegroom” to arrive and then dragging myself to a wedding banquet is not something I would look forward to. Clearly the issue in this parable is not falling asleep; we all do that when we are tired. Rather, the Lord wants us to be prepared with enough oil for our lamps to accompany the bridegroom to the banquet whenever he arrives.
Being ready to serve God at all times is a constant theme of Matthew’s gospel, especially in its final chapters. Jesus, as he did in yesterday’s gospel, reminds us to stay awake, to be alert, and today he uses the parable of the ten virgins as a reminder for us to be prepared to meet the Lord every day, not just as a preparation for death, but in order to live the gospel fully.
Though the challenge of always being prepared can seem daunting, even overwhelming, we should not be afraid. Though all of us will regularly fail at living a full gospel life, if we have prepared ourselves for the inevitable breakdowns in our commitment, God will be waiting to greet us when we wake up again. Pray and be grateful each day for the gift of faith. Christ will do the rest.
Today, take five minutes to do nothing but pay attention to the day.
Who has helped you learn to live each day with joy and passion?