Jesus said to his disciples: “Gird your loins and light your lamps and be like servants who await their master’s return from a wedding, ready to open immediately when he comes and knocks. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival. Amen, I say to you, he will gird himself, have them recline at table, and proceed to wait on them. And should he come in the second or third watch and find them prepared in this way, blessed are those servants.” (Luke 12:35-38)
In today’s scripture. Jesus praises those who keep an awareness of his presence. He calls us to be “like servants who await their master’s return from a wedding, ready to open immediately when he comes and knocks. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival. … And should he come in the second or third watch and find them prepared in this way, blessed are those servants.”
This is the attitude we call “presence of God,” an awareness that Jesus is with us in the world, an alertness of the various ways he comes to us.
If we are that aware, if we believe that then the actions of our lives change. So much that we are different from many. We are distinctive from the rest of the world. Not every day because our humanity gets in the way and we stumble, sometimes even fail.
It’s the very act of striving that is so meaningful. Because we are striving for God’s holiness, because acting in accord with it reveals a truth, and it is a truth that is both arresting and attractive. And meaningful to God.
God calls us to be faithful and ready to do whatever our heavenly Father commands us. How can we serve as Jesus served and be faithful to the end of our days? Only love – the love which God has poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us (Romans 5:5) – can transform us and fill us with joy and courage in offering our lives in humble service to God and one another. The Lord Jesus sets us free from fear and pride so we can love and serve one another as he has loved and served each one of us (Ephesians 5:2).
To do that, we need to adopt a servant heart and a willing spirit that is ready to listen and always eager to obey.
“A servant heart.” “A willing spirit.” “Ready to listen.” “Eager to obey.”
Those very phrases seem out of touch in today’s world. In fact, the very opposite of each of those phrases seem to be operative in our society.
And that is why we are different when we live with an awareness of the very presence of God.
God is real and is calling us. He wants us to know that our lives will unfold not as we dream them but as God dreams them. We are called to trust, to open our hearts and allow Christ to make his dream for us a reality.
We believe that Christ is coming at the end of time and that we want to welcome him. But we also believe that Christ is already present in each one of us.
So, if we want to welcome him then, we start by welcoming him now. If we began to think in this way, our lives would change. We would treat people differently. If that attitude became contagious, we could change our world. Then more and more people would be acting with greater love, justice, and respect. This is what God calls us to do, to build God’s kingdom. We could fulfill our mission and serve our God simply by welcoming each other as the Messiah.
Prayer of The Day
“Lord Jesus, you loved me first and you gave your life for me. Fill me with a joyful heart and a generous spirit that is ready to serve and to do whatever you command.”
Jesus is the Master who is coming back soon, at a time we are not sure about. We are his servants, entrusted with the care of our own lives in the meantime. Ultimately, even our lives are simply a gift from God; they belong to him. He entrusted us with them as with a precious gift. If we squander that gift by wasting our lives in self-absorption, self-gratification, and other genres of rebellious, sinful behavior, we will lose the original gift and never enjoy its fulfillment. But if we spend our lives in a manner worthy of the master who gave them to us–generously loving God and neighbor, developing our potential, and putting it at the service of all that is true, good, and beautiful–then we will be blessed when he returns. Indeed, upon that return, we will enter into his joy, and he will rejoice in us, and all our deepest desires will be satisfied far beyond our wildest imagination.