A personal reflection on Matthew 25.1-13
Subtitle: Second Chances
The parable’s judgment, as I interpret the story, is more fluid and less final.
Good thing! For I am not sure that any of us would have an (any?) interest in being invited to a wedding banquet (or to a kingdom!), the door to which we, in the face of our failings, would find closed in our faces forever.
I am sure that I would not! For fail, I, at times, do. Failure always is the risk of risk; a potential outcome of trying.
Even more, I am not perfectly competent. I err. I make mistakes in my perceptions of what is real and true and, therefore, in my decisions, my choices.
Still more, I am not omnicompetent. There are many things that I don’t and can’t do well or at all. I, at best, am unevenly competent. (Although a friend once opined that that is far better than being evenly – thus, altogether – incompetent!)
But I think, I believe that I have learned that this life, in our very earnest living of it, holds out the possibility of second chances. To grasp hold of that possibility – whether understood as bestowed by God’s gracious hand or offered in the occasion of each new moment of opportunity or granted and received within the working of one’s own heart or all of the above – offers hope in the facing of our inevitable failings…
The possibility of second chances, even when I err terribly badly and, despairing, recognize that the moment, once passed, cannot be reclaimed, has helped me to hear that the eternal or my internal, “I do not know you,” is not the last word…
The possibility of second chances has granted me the grace to confess my failings in an anticipation of living into the promise of growth; the door to which such painstaking honesty can open…
The possibility of second chances has allowed me to relinquish my right to be right, hence, empowering me to live in the moment, making the best decisions I can, living with the consequences, without the burden of having to prove how right my decisions are or, indeed, how right I am!
Am I ready? In a real way, I suppose, it really doesn’t matter.
What matters? Taking the risk of risk…of trying.
2 thoughts on “Ready or not, here I come(?), Part 4 of 4”
This is AWESOME!!! Where would we be without second chances!!!?? I love getting second chances to fix something AND giving people second chances to fix something with me!!
I’m guessing God gives us millions of second chances throughout our lives!!
One of the other things that stuck out to me in this post is about how we tend to focus on the things we can not do!! I’ve spent my entire life wishing I could swim!! And at some point I’m going to learn how to swim, because I also believe that it’s never too late to learn something new!!
Hmmm, what occurred to me, Loretta, when I read your words – “One of the other things that stuck out to me in this post is about how we tend to focus on the things we can not do!!” – is my reaction of amazement (envy, too!), which I consider in a similar vein as my pondering all the things I can’t do, when I read of someone who has done or who does incredible things (and, especially, when the person is or the persons are younger than I!). How oft have I said to myself, “That’s terrific and I wish I had done that!”
All that said, you’re right, given that you write of learning to swim, what if I, rather than dwelling on what I can’t do (which, on immediate second thought, may really be a case of not having tried!), contemplated bettering myself in some things I already do or, imagine this, attempting to do something I’ve only considered? Hmmm, I must think more about this…
As for you and swimming, as I always say: Carry on!
And, as for God’s granting us second chances, thank God!