Authors seem to have different approaches when it comes to writing. Some mystery writers will write the ending first and work their way backwards. It makes sense in a way- you cannot develop the chain of events in a story unless you can determine what they are leading to. Sometimes glossy magazines will have spoiler-alerts of the latest twists and turns in a Soap Opera. Still the principle still holds- you must know the outcome for the writer to marshal the events that will occur along the way. Some will say this is the story of our lives. But the Christian in me begs to differ.
Our lives are not some random event. We know where we’re going with our lives. The Christian knows this from Jesus who spoke realistically about the end- his own death and the death of others. He is the Lord of all, who gives life and receives it back. In today’s Gospel Lesson, Jesus depicts a series of future events so fearful as to cause one to wonder if His purpose is not to afflict us with phobias concerning the end of our lives and the end of the world. We frequently hear the phrase “the signs of the times”- the call is to trust not anxiety. Some believers have been led astray by becoming obsessed on signs of various sorts and worse – setting dates for the end of the world. It’s wiser to be ready every day, expect the unexpected. It is good to seek and find something in life that cannot pass away- be it in love, in our friendships and in our trusting in the future.
They tell the story of a bygone king, who gave his Jester ( a professional joker or fool at a medieval court), a very decorative pole as a symbol of his being the greatest fool in all the kingdom. Everyone laughed- and the years went by until one day, the King was gravely ill in bed and told the visiting jester that he would soon go to the land of departed souls. The jester asked him did he know what language they spoke there? (no), what provisions did he make for the trip? (none), what were the people like? (he didn’t know), what plans had the king made to ensure he would be happy there? (I don’t know). How long had the king known he would be making this journey? ( all his life). Then the Jester handed his pole of office to the King, as he was truly the greatest fool in all the kingdom.