Today is the Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time. In Luke’s Gospel (12:32-48), we read the Parable of Vigilant and Faithful Servants. After imploring His disciples not to worry about the future, but instead to trust in God’s providence, Jesus tells them to be ready for His coming.
Here, Our Lord uses the Jewish tradition of dividing the night into three watches to make His point. The second and third watches fall between about 10 p.m. and sunrise, so in other words, very late into the night. Comparing the faithful to servants in a king’s house, He tells Peter and the others to prepare themselves to take on new responsibilities as leaders in the Early Church.
Like those first Christians, we too have responsibilities handed to us by God. These tasks–these ministries–bring God’s kingdom to earth and share His love with the people around us. We may not all be priests or bishops, but filled with the Spirit of God, we can and must accomplish great deeds in His name.
So, listen for God’s voice in prayer. Look in our community for the needs gone unfilled. And take the example of Christ in scripture to understand His will. We, the servants of God, will help His kingdom come, one act of love at a time. Be ready.
The Catechism teaches us:
2849 Such a battle and such a victory become possible only through prayer. It is by his prayer that Jesus vanquishes the tempter, both at the outset of his public mission and in the ultimate struggle of his agony. In this petition to our heavenly Father, Christ unites us to his battle and his agony. He urges us to vigilance of the heart in communion with his own. Vigilance is “custody of the heart,” and Jesus prayed for us to the Father: “Keep them in your name.” The Holy Spirit constantly seeks to awaken us to keep watch. Finally, this petition takes on all its dramatic meaning in relation to the last temptation of our earthly battle; it asks for final perseverance. “Lo, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is he who is awake.”