Several months ago, I stood in the security checkpoint at a small airport. The passengers moved about, grabbing gray bins and tossing in shoes and carry-on items.
A man in front of me stopped in midstream and groaned in agony. “No!”
His briefcase lay open. He stared into it as if gazing into a bottomless pit.
His two traveling companions asked almost simultaneously, “What’s wrong?”
The man, now an ashen white, uttered a few profane phrases then blurted, “I left my computer at the hotel. I’ve got to go back.”
This man was not prepared for his departure. Maybe he was distracted by the cares of this world? Maybe he was basking in euphoria over closing the big deal? Maybe he looked forward to getting home and his mind was already with his family? Whatever his reasons, the end result was the same. He was not ready.
“Go on without me,” he told his companions. “If I don’t make it back in time, I will catch up with you later.”
I remember the looks on his companions’ faces. It was easy to see that they had no intention of staying behind. They had their boarding passes in hand, their luggage was checked, and they were getting on the plane—whether he was ready or not.
Immediately, I thought of a similar scenario Jesus discussed centuries ago.
The Ten Virgins
Five foolish and five wise virgins took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. The wise virgins also took oil; the foolish ones did not. The bridegroom was delayed, and all ten virgins fell asleep. At midnight, the cry came: Here’s the bridegroom! All ten virgins woke up and grabbed their lamps—needing the light to see the way.
But the foolish virgins did not have enough oil. This meant they had to go find more. The man at the airport made it back before we boarded the airplane. The foolish virgins were not so fortunate.
Matthew 25:10-13 reads:
And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut.
“Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open to us!’ But he answered and said, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.’
“Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.”
Alert and Ready!
How are we made ready for the Bridegroom? By faith, we must know Jesus Christ as our personal Savior, trusting in His atoning work on the cross to cover our sins and make us His righteous bride.
While we cannot know the hour or the day of Christ’s return, we can know the time is nearer than it was the day before. Let us walk in an elevated state of readiness—never fearful, but ever faithful in anticipation of seeing our Lord.
Let us be a reminder to family, friends, and those who the Lord puts in our path that the time is short, but seats are waiting and available. Welcome them on board by sharing the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. He alone is their boarding pass, and they’re not getting on the plane without Him.
Just as the virgins longed to see their groom, we should be eager to see Jesus, our Savior, face to face! He tells us, “Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.” (Rev. 22:12-13).
What would have happened if the man with the missing computer had not returned before the door of the plane closed? He would have been left behind. The same holds true for you and your loved ones.
The Pilot will not hold the plane for you—the door will not remain open one second longer than God commands. Be ready and alert for the return of Jesus. He is coming—soon!
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