On the drive home from vacation, my wife took out her iPad and started making notes. After each trip she creates a list of what did and did not work. So the next time we go somewhere we will be prepared.
We decided to rent a fishing boat. As I got ready to make the call, I wondered how much it cost last year. Before the words were out of my mouth, Peggy had placed last year’s receipt in my hands. My life would fold like a lawn chair without her.
Life is so much easier when you are organized. At least that’s how it looks from the unorganized side. I’ve struggled with organization my whole life. No matter how hard I try, I just can’t make it happen. It often leaves me unprepared.
Today, Jesus tells a parable of ten bridesmaids who take lamps and wait for the bridegroom to arrive. Five are prepared and have enough oil for the night. 5 are like me, a flask of oil short of a full lamp. The unprepared are not only left behind, they are shut out. The door is closed in their face and the Lord says, “I don’t even know you.”
There is literally no hope for me in this lesson. There are texts that make each one of us feel utterly hopeless. Why would Jesus treat me so harshly for something I am incapable of doing? Yet, I have learned to find comfort in my inabilities. Jesus has taught me to pray, “Lord, have mercy on me.” These words make me known and bring me life. Whenever you feel hopeless or incapable pray these words. Pray them over and over to be reminded faith is not about your abilities. It’s about Jesus’ ability to be merciful to you. (Mt 25: 1-13)