The Power of PreparationFr. Barnabas Powell
On this Holy Tuesday:
Let us pray to the Lord.
O you who observe all things with your eye that never sleeps, who afford us such saving lessons in your desire to grant mercy to all who seek it: We give thanks to you for raising us from bed and sleep to enjoy the light of another day. Receive this morning worship we offer you as we continue to follow the passion of your only Son. Enable us to prepare our lamps with care, that they may shine forth with undaunted faith and virtue. Like the wise virgins, may we, too, be worthy of entering the wedding feast with your Christ, so that, filled with a deep love for him, we may also be worthy of the incorruptible crown.
By the grace and mercy and love for us of your only Son, with whom you are blest, together with your all-holy, good, and life-giving Spirit: now and forever, and unto ages of ages. Amen. (A prayer of Fr. Laurence)
The parable of the five wise and five foolish virgins is such a familiar story that we run the risk of passing it by without proper attention.
Today, let us consider the risk we take when we foolishly neglect to prepare. In our every day lives a lack of preparation always reveals an inattentive mind. This is why the Church focuses us on staying spiritually awake through repentance. Repentance is the “changing of your mind” the transformation in the way you think.
This is why the five wise virgins thought ahead and prepared themselves in case the Bridegroom delayed His arrival. Their good preparation started with the way they thought.
The truth is all our good works, all our devotion, all our behavior (good and bad), begins with the way we think.
Today, set your mind on things above. Remember the wisdom from St. Paul: “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” Philippians 4:8
Today, pay attention to what you think about and allow the focus of Holy Week to crowd out all lesser worries, fears, and temptations.