Are You Ready?
A thief is coming in the night. You aren’t sure when, but His coming is imminent. It could be at any moment. It could be today, tomorrow, five years from now, or even longer. We are certain that He will come, but uncertain as to when. Are you ready?
This is the picture that Paul gives us of Jesus’ return in 1 Thessalonians 5:2, 4: “For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night…But you are not in darkness brothers, for that day to surprise you like a thief.” Paul writes as if we should be eagerly awaiting Christ’s return, keeping watch for that moment when He will come back to consummate His Kingdom. Paul writes to make sure the Thessalonians keep their eyes open for that cataclysmic moment when Jesus comes to set all things right and establish His rule in fullness.
Are you ready? Do you often think about the reality of Christ’s return and the impact it has on the decisions we make day-to-day? Are the mundane moments of your day informed by the fact that Jesus could split the skies and overthrow this world order at any instant? Honestly, I don’t live that way. I don’t keep a watchful eye for the return of Christ day after day. But…I should!
Here are three ways my life would change if I were more aware of the pending return of Christ:
I would be less concerned with things that are temporal and worldly by nature.
One obvious hobby comes to my mind: watching sports. My interest in the outcome of games and my emotional attachment to my favorite teams would drastically fall if I truly internalized the fact that Jesus could come back at any moment. These things that distract from God’s plan and Kingdom would fade into the background as I concentrated on what truly matters for all of eternity.
I would ask myself regularly if the way I spent the last week or day or hour is how I would want to spend it if I knew that I was about to see Jesus face-to-face.
Knowing that I could momentarily be in the presence of the glorified Christ would drive me to be more intentional in the ways that I use my time and energy. I would seek to use the days of my life for Kingdom purposes and bring honor to Jesus in all that I do.
I would recognize the urgency of sharing the Gospel with the people God has put in my life and taking the Gospel to the nations.
Carl F. H. Henry said, “The Gospel is only good news if it gets there in time.” Given the reality of Jesus’ imminent return, we need to be actively praying and looking for opportunities to share the hope of Christ with those He has put into our lives. This doesn’t only impact the way we interact with family members, coworkers, and neighbors, but also the way we view the nations. There are many people groups throughout the world that need an authentic witness for Christ, so we must begin praying that God would raise laborers to go share the good news with them.
Jesus is coming back. It is promised in God’s Word and we are told to be ready. What if we allowed this truth to impact our lives today?
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Dustin Speaks is Grace’s Mobilization & College Pastor. He and his wife, Lauren, arrived in Columbus in the fall of 2012, after several initial ministry experiences. Dustin previously served as an associate pastor in South Dakota and as a missionary to university students in Berlin, Germany. Dustin studied history at Ohio University, where he met Lauren and was involved in campus ministry with Cru. After graduation, Dustin went to Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (Chicago) to complete a degree in Intercultural Studies. He enjoys playing nearly all ball sports: basketball, golf, and soccer are his favorites. Dustin and Lauren have three young children.