“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. As the bridegroom was delayed, all of them became drowsy and slept. But at midnight there was a shout, ‘Look! Here is the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ Then all those bridesmaids got up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the wise replied, ‘No! There will not be enough for you and for us; you had better go to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.’ And while they went to buy it, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went with him into the wedding banquet; and the door was shut. Later the other bridesmaids came also, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open to us.’ But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I do not know you.’ Keep awake therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour.
Jesus told parables as a way of teaching. This one seems straight forward. The wise characters here were the ones who prepared ahead of time. The foolish characters didn’t prepare. When it comes to living in the kingdom (not just after this life but in the here and now) things are better if you prepare. When we read God’s Word, keep on contact with God in prayer, love neighbor and self as a way of honoring and loving God, things seem to go better.
The old saying may still apply: “Failing to prepare means preparing to fail.”
God, let me act wisely as I live each day enjoying the bounty that you provide. Let me work, my service, and my attention to you help me find contentment and joy. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.