The above scripture is from the Parable of the Ten Virgins (Matthew 25:1-13). It is a story about being spiritually prepared. There were ten virgins who went out to meet the bridegroom. Five were foolish and five were wise. The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. The wise, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. When they woke up in the middle of the night, the foolish ones’ lamps went out and they wanted the wise ones to share their oil. The wise virgins told the foolish ones, sorry, go and get some for yourselves.
I know the wise virgins sounded harsh. Did you think they were selfish? Why wouldn’t they share? The Bible teaches us to love our neighbor. The New Testament teaches about sharing one’s wealth. But just hold on a minute. Let me explain. Sometimes loving means that we allow others do their own work. Sometimes loving means letting friends learn the hard way. People don’t always want to be fixed or helped, unless it is in the middle of the night as in this story—in a dark place in their life. Regarding our spiritual lives, I believe we each must do our own work. We can’t keep bailing others out. When we do, we are hindering God working in their lives. Friends and relatives don’t go to church, read their Bibles, don’t pray, don’t listen to tapes, and then when the darkness comes, they want some of what you have—your oil.
This week, think about your oil supply. Don’t you get tired of people using up your oil? What is the oil that keeps your lamp lit? Do you need to replenish your supply? When the bridegroom comes, will you be prepared?
Prayer: Dear Lord, I want to be prepared. Give me oil for my lamp; keep me burning with an intense desire to know you better.
From one wedding guest to another,
Keep the fire glowing!