Gospel reading for Pentecost XII
32 Jesus said, ‘Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 33Sell your possessions, and give alms. Make purses for yourselves that do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. 34For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
35 ‘Be dressed for action and have your lamps lit; 36be like those who are waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet, so that they may open the door for him as soon as he comes and knocks.37Blessed are those slaves whom the master finds alert when he comes; truly I tell you, he will fasten his belt and have them sit down to eat, and he will come and serve them. 38If he comes during the middle of the night, or near dawn, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves.
39 ‘But know this: if the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into.40You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an unexpected hour.’ Luke 12: 32-40 NRSV
When a person is waiting for something, there is always the unexpected. When a person is waiting there’s an element of excitement. That’s like all the excitement around waiting for a birth into a royal household. It’s a happy expectation.
I’d say excitement is the positive point in the process of waiting but that can get overpowered under the tension of the unexpected in the more usual pressures of a normal person’s life and experience.
It’s as if the community of a household is waiting for the master to return from an important engagement. Will all be ready as the master expects? Will you be able to fulfill your part? Will I be able to do my part?
And how do we become ready? Just exactly how are we supposed to get ready?
Waiting has to do with what’s now not fully known.