Have you ever watched a game in any sport that was crucial, your team was ahead and it was just a matter of watching the clock run down before the final victory was declared? What were you feeling as you waited for the final buzzer to sound? Hopeful? Relieved? Eager to fully celebrate triumphantly?
Like an important football game, the intense work, pain and heat of the game parallels the annual season of planting followed by the heat of summer before harvest begins in the fall. Both require dedication and hard work.
Jesus used both sport and harvesting to help us understand His plan for the ages. Both are apt analogies for anticipating the end of the age which is a repeated theme throughout the Bible. Even though most of us on this planet live as if we will always be here, the truth is an end is coming one day.
I’ve noticed two responses in talking about this topic. The most common one is a dismissive response with the words, “we can’t know when He is coming back so why talk about it.” The second is sometimes whispered with eyes bright and alive, “You think He’s coming back soon too?”
It is undeniable that Jesus said, “of that day and hour no one knows,” but it is equally undeniable that He said, “be on the alert, be ready, I am coming quickly, the time is near, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God.” Anticipating a great harvest or a great victory is eagerly embraced; so should we be eagerly looking for the return of our Savior whose last recorded words in the bible are, “I am coming quickly.”
There are many who believe the Jewish feast of trumpets this September 13-15 might be the time Jesus returns with the “trumpet of God,” and I hope it is true, but even if it is not, the crucial question is, are we as believers living every day aware of His promised imminent return? If not why not?
Anticipating His return even if it does not happen in our lifetime is an important faith choice as a Christian. To believe God’s word that this earth is not our home, that the game of life will end in victory, that a great harvest is coming, keeps us living in hope as we anticipate the promises of God becoming reality.
It has been good for my faith to think about His return, to long for it, to anticipate all that is spelled out in God’s word that is ahead for me and all whose names are written in the book of the Lamb. Living for Christ means being aware that my plans may not be His as James said, “you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow.”
I pray you will join me in living with greater expectancy for His return. May you allow yourself to feel a sense of eagerness and hopefulness for this promised event that is and will be far more wonderful than any sporting victory or fall harvest could ever be!
Come quickly Lord Jesus!