Anticipation. The act of anticipating. Of regarding something as possible and taking action to be prepared. Of looking forward to something in the future with a present readiness.
The opposite of anticipation? Being unaware. Unengaged. Not ready. Asleep at the wheel.
Thinking about being ready this morning as I read in Luke’s gospel .
“Stay dressed for action and keep your lamps burning, and be like men who are waiting for their master to come home from the wedding feast, so that they may open the door to him at once when he comes and knocks. . . . You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.” ~ Jesus
(Luke 12:35-36, 40 ESV)
Jesus to His disciples: “You also must be ready.” The Master is coming back. The Bridegroom will soon call for His bride. The King is not long in claiming His kingdom. And ours, as His servants, His bride, and His people, is to live in anticipation of His return. To live in expectation. To be ready.
What’s more, says Jesus three times in this passage, “Blessed are the awake!”
“Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes. Truly, I say to you, he will dress himself for service and have them recline at table, and he will come and serve them. If he comes in the second watch, or in the third, and finds them awake, blessed are those servants! . . . Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes.” ~ Jesus again
(Luke 12:37-38, 43 ESV)
Repetition is exclamation in my books. A raising of the voice. Multiple flashing signs saying, “Don’t miss this!” And in this case, all fingers are pointing to a blessing.
Blessed are those dressed for action. Blessed are those who keep their lamps burning. Blessed are those who are doing what the Master has asked them to do.
Blessed are those living in anticipation. Blessed are those occupied, with whatever they do, in expectation that the Son of Man could come at any moment. Blessed are those ready for His return.
Blessed are the awake!
The awake are those who do whatever they do as for the Lord, knowing that, when He comes, they will receive His inheritance as their reward (Col. 3:23-24). The awake are those who recognize they are stewards of the abilities and talents they’ve been graced with by the Master of the house and deploy them in service to His kingdom (Matt. 25:14-30). The awake are those focused not only on investing in their retirement plans but are also intentionally laying up treasure in heaven (Matt. 6:20, 1Tim. 6:18-19).
And the awake are those who are blessed.
Oh, to be found faithful. To be doing what I do with an eye towards pleasing my Master. To be mindful of the stewardship He’s given me. To be somewhat aware of the part He’s asked me to be in the Body. To intentionally use what I think are the gifts He’s graced me with in the area of service He’s called me to. All because I awake every morning–not that I do, but that I should–with the thought, “Perhaps today!”
Should the day come before the grave comes, might I be found in anticipation of His return. Might I be found awake. Then blessed will be this servant.
By His grace. For His glory.