The Peril of Lost Opportunities

“For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them, but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps” (Matthew 25:3-4).

Jesus often used parables to draw comparisons and teach vital lessons. In this parable, ten virgins were to greet the bridegroom upon his return. Five of them wisely provided oil for their lamps, while the other five took no oil in their lamps and were not prepared to meet the bridegroom. When the bridegroom suddenly appeared, the five foolish ones were not prepared. This parable teaches us the necessity of getting spiritually prepared. It also teaches us about lost opportunities.

We tend to promise ourselves more time than we actually possess. “I’ll serve God, soon.” “When the New Year arrives, I will get my spiritual act together.” “I will become a more responsible parent when things at work ease up.” We promise ourselves this time, but it did not come from God.

We need to take advantage of today, because tomorrow may never arrive. In fact, the Bible forbids presuming on the future (James 4:13-16). The opportunities stand before us, sometimes called in the Bible, “open doors” (Acts 14:27; 1 Corinthians 16:9; 2 Corinthians 2:12). God opens the door to serve Him, and we need to walk through.

Things never really “settle down” in life, even in retirement. We have bills to pay, children to raise, and often health issues as we age. We need to take every opportunity to serve God now with our strength and vigor. Opportunities and “open doors” should trigger us to action, especially as we consider the harvest.

Ask God to show you where He wants you, but take a decisive step today to do something for Him. Days turn into months, and months into years. Before we know it, life will be through. We will rejoice that we served a God worth our very best.

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