I remember a song from my childhood called; Give Me Oil in my Lamp Keep me Burning. We added some lyrics: give me wax on my board; keep me surfing for the Lord. Or, give me gas in my Ford, keep me truckin’ for the Lord. And then, give me umption in my gumption, help me function for the Lord. I thought of this song as I read from Matthew chapter 25 recently.
Matthew 25 begins with a parable of Jesus. The setting of this parable is a wedding. The wedding itself took place in the house of the groom. Waiting with the bride at her house were young ladies, ten in Jesus’ parable. These young ladies would be the bride’s friends, and they would accompany the couple from the house of the bride back to the groom’s house. There would be a procession through the streets and often this took place at night. We also know from the parable that everyone in the procession carried burning torches, oil fed lamps in which the rags required periodic dusting with oil to keep them burning. In the parable Jesus contrasts between wise and foolish bridesmaids. The wise young ladies were described as those who brought extra oil, a flask with an additional supply of oil. In contrast were foolish young ladies who did not have sufficient oil. When the groom came unexpectedly, some did not have enough oil for the procession to the groom’s house and because of this, they missed the wedding celebration.
Have you made provision to keep your spiritual lamp burning? I’ve been following Christ long enough to know that primarily it is what is done in secret that keeps my spiritual life burning brightly. It’s my personal commitment to private spiritual disciplines that keeps me spiritually alive. It’s true for all of us. It is the consistent, regular practice of private spiritual disciplines that keeps us grounded, deep and engaged. Deep spiritual faith is the result of what happens in the secret place of our lives.
A great place to start is by taking a long, loving look at God in His Word.