In 2004, Tim McGraw released a Grammy award-winning song entitled, “Live Like You Were Dying” (go ahead and sing the chorus to yourself—you know you want to). A few years later, actors Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson co-starred in a movie called “The Bucket List.” Though the two releases weren’t related to one another (as far as I can tell), the theme behind them was similar: what would you do now if you knew your days were numbered? How would you live today if tomorrow wasn’t guaranteed?
This is essentially the question behind two of Jesus’ parables in Matthew 25:1-30. The first, under the heading “The Parable of the Ten Virgins” in my Bible, is about a group of bridesmaids waiting for the groom to arrive so they can go into the marriage feast. While none of the bridesmaids know when the groom will arrive, five of them wisely brought oil to keep their lamps burning, while the remaining five foolishly left their oil behind. Five were prepared, while the other five were not.
The second parable, “The Parable of the Talents,” is about three servants whose master entrusted his property to them. Two of the servants increased their talents by reinvesting what the master had originally trusted to them. The third, however, buried his talents in the ground. When the master came to settle accounts, the first two were prepared for the master’s return, while the third was not.
To bring this full circle, tomorrow is not guaranteed. Whether the Lord calls you home in death or he comes again to gather his people, your days are numbered. How are you living today knowing that tomorrow is not certain? Are you prepared now, eagerly trusting Christ at this moment? Are you wisely stewarding the time, talent, resources the Lord has entrusted to you? The Lord is returning. The wedding feast is being prepared. The master is coming to settle accounts. Let us be found faithful today, for we do not know what tomorrow holds.