Be Dressed in Readiness

You do not know the day or the hour, keep your loins girded, be alert.  And He told them a parable saying, “The land of a certain rich man was very productive and he began reasoning to himself saying, ‘What shall I do since I have no place to store my crops?’  And he said, ‘This is what I’ll do.  I will tear down my barns and build larger ones and there I will store all my grain and my goods and I will say to my soul, “Soul you have many goods laid up for many years take your ease, eat, drink and be merry.”  But God said to him, “You fool.  This very night your soul is required of you and now who will own what you have prepared?”  So is the man who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich towards God.”

Jesus, from the moment He began His ministry, was steadfastly walking toward His death.  Rich toward God He set His eyes ahead to the trial and the glory that was to be.  His disciples did not comprehend His mindset for they set their hearts on the things of man.  Jesus said to His brothers, when they were goading Him to go up to the feast in Jerusalem to make Himself public, “That your time is always opportune but that My time was not yet.”

Man sets his heart on the things of this world and cannot conceive that his days are fleeting and the day of God’s time for him is at hand.

We live for the life and satisfactions of this world but the deeper purpose of existence eludes our grasp.  We take the gifts of God’s bounty but not the reason for our journey.  As a result we are constantly taken by surprise.  It is never opportune for a man in this world to leave this world, to him it is a tragedy.  So Peter says to Jesus in response to his being told the fate that awaited the Lord, “Heaven forbid that this should happen to You.”  But it was for this reason that He was born and it was to this assignation that He steadfastly walked, without breaking step.

Always in readiness, no matter what time of day or night, He gave what He had to give, reaching out in love, without anywhere to lay His head, walking toward His goal.

We say we are disciples but are we really following?  A bit of idleness, a bit of folding of the hands, and we lose sight of the path that the Lord has prepared for us to walk to perform the good works He has assigned for us.  Just as the Father sent Him so He sends us.

Men face the leaving of this world as a tragedy while Jesus walked towards it as a goal.  His living was informed by His dying.  His love and His steadfastness and His resolve and all the love that He imparted was fully realised in His death.  Rich towards God He shared His riches with us.

If we love Him we too look toward Him, with unveiled face, longing for our redemption, not shrinking from our departure, our death, but urging others onward, to press on upward to the full hope of our calling, hastening the day of His coming, bearing the momentary light affliction, until we all attain to the full hope of the glory that will be revealed to us.

We become surprised when things don’t go as we planned, when our schemes and plans for our happiness don’t eventuate.  We retire and look forward to the wealth in our barns financing our trips and our years of idyllic heading into the sunset, and suddenly death upsets our plans, when really the hope of life should be in our leaving.

Our whole heart is not in our living as we ought, rich in longing toward God, not just in eternity, but here today, always living to be pleasing to Him.  Life should be lived dressed in readiness, oil in our lamps, always alive and longingly open to Him, so that whether in the body or out of the body we are always doing what delights Him

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