'Can you expect to go to Heaven for nothing? Did not our dear Savior track the whole way to it with His Blood and tears?' - St. Elizabeth Ann Seton: (1774 – 1821: The first native-born citizen of the United States to be canonized by the Roman Catholic Church)
Gospel Text: (LK 12:35-38)
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.”
Perhaps you’ve heard the old adage, “Always begin with your end in mind.” “End” in this case refers to one’s goal. Many people, of course, wander through life aimlessly, but Christians are meant to have Heaven as their goal, or end. In this case, repeating that adage to ourselves each day helps us to live each day for God, by recalling that we can only get to Heaven by living out our faith in God. This way of thinking approximates what Jesus is getting at in His parable.
However, there’s an immediacy to Jesus’ parable that’s missing in that adage. His parable reminds us of a sobering fact: that we know not the day nor the hour when our lives will end. The Master may come at an unexpected time. Therefore, we need not only always to be focused, but also to be vigilant, as the end we have in mind may confront us today.