Monday, September 18, 2017

Living Ready

A few days before Hurricane Irma headed to Atlanta, I messaged my son. "Better go to the grocery and get some basic supplies. Just in case." Like many of us, he couldn't believe the storm, or the surge, was coming that far inland. The night before Irma arrived, he finally went to the store. 

The empty bread aisle convinced him. 

He managed to find enough non-perishable food for a week. He hurried home to fill the bathtub and all available containers with water. Just in case.

His last-minute preparations reminded me of the Parable of the Ten Virgins who waited for the bridegroom to come for his bride. Five were foolish and had no extra oil. Five were wise and carried extra oil. 

Their wait was longer than hoped, but the bridegroom finally arrive. At the very moment of celebration, the foolish virgins' lamps flickered and they realized they were out of fuel. They left the party to buy more oil, missed the arrival of the guest of honor, and were locked out by the time they returned.

Failure to prepare had cost them everything. 

Jesus made it very clear. (Leanna Paraphrase coming up) "I'm the bridegroom. You're the maidens waiting for me. Be on the alert, constantly watching for My return."

What do we do if we want to be prepared for His return? It's simple. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength. Love your neighbor as you love yourself. 24/7/365. No days off from faith. No time off for good behavior. 

Constant relationship. Daily obedience. 

More years have passed since Jesus ascended into heaven than anyone expected, but that doesn't change His promise. He's coming back, so let's live expectantly. 

"So you, too, must keep watch! For you do not know the day or hour of my return." Matthew 25:13 NLT
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