Monday, June 20, 2011

Oil Lamps

The latest Sunday school lesson was on Matthew 25, about the parables of the 10 virgins, talents, and the sheep and goats. I've been thinking a lot about the 10 virgins parable since Sunday and I wanted to write down my thoughts before I forgot them. This is such a great parable for me at this time in my life. There is so much to take from it and I will break it down as best as I can, but please know this is just my interpretation.

The 5 virgins who had oil and the 5 who did not. I liken this to those who are prepared for the 2nd coming and for those who are not. The 5 virgins who did not have oil were not prepared for the bridegroom. Just as we may not be prepared in some way such as, prayers, scripture study, FHE, "the essentials" list can go on. We may have been prepared at one time in our life but we slip and start forgetting to do "the essentials". (This is where I am) I'd always wondered why the 5 virgins with oil couldn't just share? I had always thought that they were a little selfish that they didn't, but the more I think about it the more I understand why they couldn't share. The oil represents preparation, which takes time and dedication. I can share my testimony, but that will not fill someone's oil. I can't lend someone 2 years of prayers for them to use. Filling our oil is something that WE have to do ourselves.

We may have 10 gallons of oil in the basement but forget that it's there. We may feel "unworthy" to use it. Gaining this oil will take time. Studying the scriptures for 5 hours is very different than studying the scriptures every day for 5 years. But once we have this oil we can use it to help us "get through" those tough times. This is something that I need to work on. Our family has been going through some really terrible trials and at times I feel that I cannot go on, it's too much, and I just want to give up. I've realized that I do not have this "reserve oil" to use to get through the hard times. It's not that I'm doing anything wrong...but that I sometimes forget scripture study or having family prayers on a regular basis. Since Sunday I have felt VERY strongly that this message was catered to me.

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