photo (2)OK so technically they are not Bridesmaids but flower girls but I’m trying to make a point here.  These girls are obviously exhausted after doing their duty for the Bride and Groom and being a part of the wedding party.  They did a beautiful job and deserved a little break.

Bridesmaids in the Bible are used in the parables of Jesus to tell us how we ought to live in the expectation of the end of days and the coming of the Kingdom of everlasting life.

25 “Then the Kingdom of Heaven will be like ten bridesmaids[a] who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. The five who were foolish didn’t take enough olive oil for their lamps, but the other five were wise enough to take along extra oil. When the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and fell asleep.

“At midnight they were roused by the shout, ‘Look, the bridegroom is coming! Come out and meet him!’

“All the bridesmaids got up and prepared their lamps. Then the five foolish ones asked the others, ‘Please give us some of your oil because our lamps are going out.’

“But the others replied, ‘We don’t have enough for all of us. Go to a shop and buy some for yourselves.’

10 “But while they were gone to buy oil, the bridegroom came. Then those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was locked. 11 Later, when the other five bridesmaids returned, they stood outside, calling, ‘Lord! Lord! Open the door for us!’

12 “But he called back, ‘Believe me, I don’t know you!’

13 “So you, too, must keep watch! For you do not know the day or hour of my return.

People like us may find themselves  sympathetic to the foolish bridesmaids. Does the church really live as though the bridegroom’s arrival is certain? Some have become caught up in trying to determine the day and the hour, while others have let their lamps run out. To live in vigilance means for the disciples to do the tasks that they have been appointed to do in preparation for the Master’s coming. In Matthew’s Gospel, those tasks include bearing witness to God’s kingdom by welcoming the stranger, feeding the hungry, visiting the sick and imprisoned (25:31-46), and making disciples in all the world (28:19-20).  We get tired and distracted and maybe forget that Jesus promised to come again.  The Bible tells us that the time to rest is coming.  It’s everlasting life.  Until then we need to be busy doing the “things that our hands find to do”.