Our first reading is from the Book of Wisdom 6:12-16.
"Resplendent and unfading is wisdom,and she is readily perceived by those who love her,and found by those who seek her.She hastens to make herself known in anticipation of their desire;Whoever watches for her at dawn shall not be disappointed,for he shall find her sitting by his gate.For taking thought of wisdom is the perfection of prudence,and whoever for her sake keeps vigilshall quickly be free from care;because she makes her own rounds, seeking those worthy of her,and graciously appears to them in the ways,and meets them with all solicitude.
As Wisdom speaks to us, she is telling us of the wonderful gifts she has for us. If we seek her, we will find her. If we keep vigil for her, she will come to us. She seeks those who are worthy of her and her gifts. What could possibly make us worthy of the gifts of Wisdom? As we continue to ponder the reading for today, that answer may become clearer. "
Psalm 63 reminds us that we do indeed seek God and in seeking Him, we will find Him. Our souls thirst for Him. God is with us; we see His power and His glory and feel His kindness. Our response must be to bless Him, praise Him and ponder on Him.
"My soul is thirsting for you, O Lord my God.O God, you are my God whom I seek;for you my flesh pines and my soul thirstslike the earth, parched, lifeless and without water.R. My soul is thirsting for you, O Lord my God.Thus have I gazed toward you in the sanctuaryto see your power and your glory,For your kindness is a greater good than life;my lips shall glorify you.R. My soul is thirsting for you, O Lord my God.Thus will I bless you while I live;lifting up my hands, I will call upon your name.As with the riches of a banquet shall my soul be satisfied,and with exultant lips my mouth shall praise you.R. My soul is thirsting for you, O Lord my God.I will remember you upon my couch,and through the night-watches I will meditate on you:You are my help,and in the shadow of your wings I shout for joy.R. My soul is thirsting for you, O Lord my God."
Finally, in our Gospel for today (Matthew 25:1-13), Jesus tells His disciples a beautiful parable about watching, waiting and being prepared.
Jesus told his disciples this parable:"The kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. The foolish ones, when taking their lamps, brought no oil with them, but the wise brought flasks of oil with their lamps. Since the bridegroom was long delayed, they all became drowsy and fell asleep. At midnight, there was a cry, 'Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!'Then all those virgins got up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish ones said to the wise, 'Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.' But the wise ones replied, 'No, for there may not be enough for us and you. Go instead to the merchants and buy some for yourselves.'While they went off to buy it, the bridegroom came and those who were ready went into the wedding feast with him. Then the door was locked.Afterwards the other virgins came and said, 'Lord, Lord, open the door for us!' But he said in reply,'Amen, I say to you, I do not know you.' Therefore, stay awake, for you know neither the day nor the hour."
Many commentaries tell us that “the wise maidens represent all those who possess the ensemble of virtues which characterize a complete Christian life. The burning oil lamps which they carry…symbolically portray Christian wisdom.” The oil that the five wise maidens have brought with them represents their personal virtue. Jesus is the bride groom for whom the maidens wait. W hen He arrives, he ushers them into the feast, those who waited for Him, sought Him, and sought His wisdom.
When I ponder all of these readings, I am reminded how important it is to “stay awake and be ready.” We need to focus on being Saints in the Making; always waiting for God in our lives. It is easy to look for God in our lives when things are not going well for us. We can recognize that “I need God; I cannot do this alone. I cannot discern what I should do; what is of God and what is not.” It may be more difficult to see God in our lives when things are going smoothly. We enjoy that feeling of contentment and happiness and it is easy to simply accept it rather than look for the source of these feelings.
God is always with us; sometimes we just don’t see Him in our lives because we are not wise enough to always watch and wait for Him. This week, I pray that we all receive the gift of watching and waiting for God and His Wisdom. He is near; we just need to seek Him.
Peace and blessings, Judy