Proverbs 6:9-11-"How long will you lie there, you sluggard? When you get up from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest-and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man."
To His Beloved,
A lot of us are like the five foolish virgins in Matthew 25. Iím one of them. Subconsciously we believe that we still have time to make ourselves white and to ready our hearts before His return. We canít fathom death ever catching up to us and live today as though we have many more days left.
The five foolish virgins were slumbering. Their eyes were heavy, their ears were dull, their spirits were lazy and complacent; they had grown accustomed to partaking of the pleasures of the world and had become drunk off of the wine these pleasures supplied. And they missed His coming.
There are many little inadequacies in my life, tiny sins or things that the Lord has gently whispered for me to cease, change, give up, or begin. I look at Him and He looks at me, and dismally I pretend as though I didn't hear as I continue to do or not to do these minuscule things His Spirit is prodding of me.
I tell myself Iíll begin next week, that Iíll wait till I am ready, or I just want to do it one last time. But what if this is my last time because tomorrow I die? What if itís too late to change because the Sonís imminent return awaits? What if I never demonstrate the love I yearn to give to Him because I keep waiting till the appropriate time to do that which I ought to have done at the first?
I think we foolish virgins are plagued by the disease ďI donít want to give up.Ē We donít want to give up our time and energy; we donít want to give up our control and our schedule; we donít want to give up our rights and our freedom; we donít want to give up our five senses pleasantries. Essentially, we donít want to give up our will.
Why then are we Christians? For the essence of Christianity is death for love.
For those who have been married, a lot of us at times Iím sure have complained throughout our marriages: ďHe never does this for me, I always do that for him. She never serves me this way, I always serve her that way. Heís so selfish, I do everything.Ē Most of us have felt at least a little bit slighted by the amount we sacrifice for our spouses with seemingly less given in return (note I said seemingly, Iím certain they feel the same way at times as well). But, we made a marriage vow to give up our life for the one we love-to love and serve them to death do us part. We did not enter into the vow to get (though we have a healthy expectation of it), but we entered in to give. The beauty of marriage comes out of the death sacrificed for it. I married knowing I had to die to my old life-to the freedom of doing what I wanted to do and going where I wanted to go. I willingly entered into a union where my will and rights were sacrificed.
How come it is so difficult to give up our will and rights to the Lord? Jesus is about to return to the earth, but like the lazy man in proverbs we can barely raise our heads from gorging on the worldís plate to zealously and diligently pursue Him. Weíre content to be complacent, and to condone little inadequacies or to dismiss gentle proddingís. We think we have time to cleanse our hearts and change our garments, but what if He appeared at the door of our home tonight-what would be the state of our heart? Is it worthy for the King to enter in or is it littered with trash and cluttered with shrines to other idols?
Father, You must stir up zeal within us to obey you and to surrender our wills. We are sluggish spiritually and dull to You speaking because weíre filled up and intoxicated on carnal things, or simply disobedient. Help us to do that which Youíve asked us to do, and give us zeal to cease the things Youíve requested of us.
The question remains at the end of each day, ďDid I love Jesus with my whole heart, soul, mind and strength today, or did I give my love to another? If this was my last day on this earth, would I regret not loving Him the way He deserves to be loved?Ē