Holy Tuesday is the third day of Holy Week. On the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem and overlooking its grandeur, many great biblical events occurred. Jesus would have taught his disciples here often, and spent time in private devotion. Here is where, in just a few days, he would ask for the cup of his fate to be removed from him (Matthew 26:39).
Like a flashback after the temple cleansing, we see Jesus overlooking the city, weeping for his people. “How often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing” (Matthew 23:37b). As the disciples hear this, one of Jesus’ teachings comes to their minds. The Parable of the Ten Virgins (Matthew 25:1-13) speaks of those who are alert and keep watch, ready and waiting for their bridegroom to come. As Jerusalem enters its greatest redemptive festival, will the Jews be prepared to receive the “Lamb of God”?
“Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.” Matthew 25:13
wait in the right way
GET READY, GET SET
for Christ to make his move
Have you ever run ahead of God, or lagged behind, because of the wait?
In Matthew 25:1-13, Jesus tells his disciples a fascinating, but confusing parable about the Kingdom of God. It’s a parable about 10 virgins who are waiting for a bridegroom to arrive to begin a celebration.
Five realize that he could be early, or he could be late. They are prepared with enough oil for their lamps, either way. The other five, called “foolish,” are only prepared for him to come on their terms; on their timetable. They won’t have enough oil if he is late. They are not prepared. Verses 10-12 show us the final scene: “But while they [the foolish virgins] were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut. Later the others also came. ‘Lord, Lord,’ they said, ‘open the door for us!’ But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you.’”
Waiting can be hard work. Most of us don’t like to wait because we feel as though waiting is a waste of time. We demand that God work according to our timetable, and when He doesn’t, we can get very, very bent out of shape. We run ahead of Him, doing what we think needs to be done, instead of waiting to see the best plan that only He can reveal.
In this parable, Jesus is teaching his disciples, and us, that we can wait anxiously and end up diverting God’s best plans for our lives. Or, we can wait well – being prepared by staying in the place of humble worship, keeping our fingers on the pulse of God’s character by taking in His Word, and restraining ourselves from spiritual laziness so that we don’t miss what God is doing due to spiritual numbness. Wait well – and be ready for Christ to make his move.
for Holy Tuesday
Lord, I believe that waiting, and waiting well, is the way to my heart becoming completely yours. When I have been impatient or lazy and have missed You, or run ahead of You, I ask for forgiveness. Teach me to wait in the right way.
for Your Easter Reflection
- Is there an area of your life where you believe you may be jumping ahead of God?
- If not is there an area in which you might be spiritually lazy, not ready to perceive God’s next move?