Go ahead and eat your meal, drink your drink, get married, but watch the clouds while you do so. Go about your work in the fields with your neighbor, wake up and grind your coffee. But assume that He could return at any moment. Live like it, at the very least. You can’t say you weren’t warned.
The other day we got word that one of our girls was planning to run away early in the morning. So early that morning I got up from bed and sat in the living room to wait and see if she would attempt her escape. Thankfully she did not, but I was ready nonetheless. I would be foolish to try and sleep while I knew one of the girls in my home was planning her escape.
But we do not know the time or hour. When asked by his disciples, Jesus made that very clear. But he is coming. “Like a thief in the night” he is coming, and we are supposed to be waiting, anticipating. We don’t really know the when or the how or truly anything about what it will even be like. There are plenty of descriptions, but I honestly find them all fairly confusing. There are doctrines of rapture and of thousand year reigns. There are beliefs of the elect, the chosen, and those left behind. There are teachings based on the dreams of heaven and the fears of hell. There are mentions of clouds and of lightning and of thunder, of thieves, and servants, and masters, and kings. Of angels and of virgins and of sheep and goats. Of stars and blood moons. Of wars and rumors of wars. I don’t know what to make of it all, to be honest, but based on how wrong people were the first time around, I’m guessing we are just as wrong about how it will all go down the second time. Yet we believe.
Despite the fact that Jesus made these promises of a second coming a couple thousand years ago, it seems that one thing he was clear and insistent about is that we stay vigilant and alert as we continue to wait. We can’t allow the centuries, the millennias, of time dissuade our preparedness. We are to be faithful in our day to day work, serving those in need, and in our sleep ready for his arrival at any moment of the night. Don’t be caught at midnight with a lamp and no oil to burn.