Jesus instructs his disciples to “sell your possessions and give alms” and goes on to observe that “where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Speculation abounds as to what the end of the age might look like and what kind of return we might expect from our Savior.
Jesus shifts the focus when talking to the disciples. They allow the times and seasons to distract them, asking when Jesus will restore the kingdom. Jesus insists that we live in the moment in readiness.
“Be dressed for action” does not constitute a fashion statement; Jesus speaks of our spiritual preparation for the kingdom of God. Paul says we are to “clothe [ourselves] with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience” (Col. 3:12)—not speculate about the Omega point of history. We don’t need more prophetic information. We need spiritual transformation into the image of Christ so that we can live on behalf of others.
Jesus also encourages us to “have [our] lamps lit.” Light enables us and others to see; the lamp is not an end in itself. “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Ps. 119:105). A lamp for the feet directs us to the next step and illumining the path gives us enough light to continue the journey.
We dress for action and have our lamps lit not so we can escape the situation around us but so others can see. Jesus said, “Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven” (Matt. 5:16).
Christian clergyman, writer, and radio evangelist, Theodore Epp stated, “We should live as if Christ died yesterday, rose today and is coming tomorrow.” In other words, be ready!

Father, may we be so clothed in your grace and reflective of your light that others will see Jesus in us. Amen.

Pray the Scriptures Using Audio Lectio
Read Luke 12:32-40

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Lectionary Week
August 1–7, 2016
Scripture Overview

ThelessonfromIsaiahandthepsalmcallthe people of God to “Hear!” The message has to do with sacri ces and burnt offerings: God does not want them! The sacri cial system had come to be understood as a means of attempting to manipulate God for self-centered purposes, and the texts there- fore call for worship that is God-centered. The Gospel lesson also calls the people of God to decision. Our use of nancial resources is inextricably linked to our conviction that the future and our destiny lie ultimately with God. What we believe about the future affects how we live in the present. This af rmation is precisely the message of Hebrews. The entrusting of one’s life and future to God is “the reality of things hoped for, the proof of things not seen.” For those who trust in God’s reign, “God is not ashamed to be called their God.”

Questions and Suggestions for Reflection

• Read Isaiah 1:1, 10-20. In what ways can you let go of a self-centered focus in worship?
• Read Psalm 50:1-8, 22-23. What are your antidotes to worry? How do they allow you to deal with anxieties in your life?
• Read Hebrews 11:1-3, 8-16. What allows you to focus on the awe and wonder of being held in God’s grace?
• Read Luke 12:32-40. Where do you see God at work in your life? How is this awareness a part of having your “lamp lit”?

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