The readings from today’s Mass challenge us to be prepared; to be in a state of vigilance. This passage can be seen in two ways. The first is to be prepared for the Second Coming of Christ. The second refers to the time when God enters our life. It is in this sense that we face reality as God created it not as we pretend it to be.
For this we must acknowledge the reality of another life; a life beyond what we know with our senses. Abraham is challenged to sacrifice his son Isaac to the Lord. His faith brought him to point of total submission and thus he was the fulfillment of the promise to be the Father of many nations. Saint Paul in the Hebrews says, “Faith is the realization of what is hoped for and evidence of the things not seen…”
We would like God to find us with our work complete, but all of us have loose ends, things we want to settle before we go. It is to those things that our attention to vigilance should point. Jesus says to you now, “Do not be afraid any longer, little flock, for your Father is pleased to give you the Kingdom.”
One of the most dangerous things for a person of faith is procrastination. The Gospel warns us that knowledge and privilege always bring responsibility. Sin is doubly sinful to the man who knew better; failure is doubly blameworthy in the man who had every chance to do well.
Once we make our preparations and can honestly say to ourselves, ‘I am ready to meet the Lord,’ will be the day we are truly at peace with the world, with ourselves and with our God. Seneca once wrote: “That day you fear as being the end of all things is the birthday of your eternity.”