Shared Excitement!

We have a dear friend from America visiting us here in the UK.  Each day has been something new.  My mother and I have enjoyed every moment.  While all our touring is going on, we decided it was best for our dog, Jack, to go to his hotel.  It’s a lovely boarding facility.  They have large fenced in and gated grounds.  The dogs are taken out everyday to run in the woods and play in the grassy laid areas.  Whenever I take Jack, he is full of happiness.  He never even looks back at me as they come to take him away.  His tail is up as he trots onward, ready for playtime with new canine friends.

While we are glad that Jack is happy, we still miss him, and look forward to his return.  The plan has been that we will come for him on Monday.  However, our neighbor suggested that we get him on Saturday.  He will be home from work and can look after Jack while we are taking our friend out and about, seeing the sights of our UK home.  My excitement rose!  Mom, too!  What a welcome idea!  We know, also, that as happy as Jack has been, he will be terribly excited when we arrive to bring him back home.

My rousing anticipation of going to get Jack made me think of something that has never entered my mind before.  It concerned thoughts about the return of Jesus.  Often I have had a sense of thrill at the thought of Jesus coming again, of seeing Him face to face, but never have I thought about how excited Jesus would be, too!  Think about it.  Jesus loves us so very much.  He is looking forward to the day when He will come for us and set up His kingdom on earth.  When He returns, an eternity of sheer bliss begins.  He is waiting with eagerness!  He doesn’t know when He is coming, so with the signs of the times, His own anticipation must be mounting!  Jesus told us in Matthew 24:36, “No one knows the day or hour when these things will happen, not even the angels in heaven or the Son Himself!  Only the Father knows.”  What an extraordinary thought!  Just as we are awaiting His return with great eagerness, Jesus is also waiting with a passion that we can only imagine!   At His Father’s word, He will come swiftly for us.  What a thrill this is going to be, for us, and for Him, too.

 

A Flight With No Delays

Yesterday a dear friend from America arrived to visit us.  Mom and I love being tour guides.  We have our itinerary planned and look forward to showing her our UK world.

When she arrived at the departure airport in America,  she sent a message to tell us her flight was delayed.  A little while later another message came informing us of another delay.  I kept watch on this end, looking online at flight arrivals so we would know what time to be at the airport.

Now she is with us and we are already off to a great start, having taken her yesterday afternoon to see some of our favorite views where we live in our coastal town.  She walked on our pebble beach.  Even our dog, Jack, took her into the hills to show her a much loved walking place where the views back over to the sea are gorgeous.  She was slightly delayed in her flight to get here but all is well now.

I couldn’t help but think of the flight departure that awaits everyone who personally knows Jesus.  He has promised to return to take us to Himself.  He will actually meet us in the air!  What an exciting flight that will be.  There will be no delays in that flight.  At the already appointed time (Our heavenly Father has scheduled that time) Jesus will be sent to collect us.  Here is what we are told in I Thessalonians 4:15-18, “We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet Him ahead of those who have died.  For the Lord Himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God.  First, believers who have died will rise from their graves.  Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.  Then we will be with the Lord forever.  So encourage each other with these words.”  It certainly is encouraging to know that we who have invited Jesus into our lives, accepting His forgiveness and promise of eternal life, will be taken to live with Him in perfect joy (no sadness, tears, or death) in heaven for eternity.

I sometimes look into the faces of people I see on the streets or in shopping areas, or I think of people I have met all over the world in my travels, and I wonder and hope and pray, that understanding of the opportunity of eternal life in heaven will come to them.  It’s so easy to receive Jesus into one’s life.  Just call out to Him, thank Him for dying to forgive everything you have ever done, invite Him into your life.  He will come.  He will forgive.  He loves you.  I hope you come.

“I’ll Be Back, Jack.”

Like every dog, Jack watches with anticipation for me to return whenever he sees me go.  “I’ll be back, Jack,” I assure him as he looks at me with somewhat mournful eyes.  If he had his way I would stay with him every moment of the day.

It was the same with the disciples of Jesus.  After the crucifixion, when they finally began to understand exactly who Jesus was and why He had come, there came the moment when He told them goodbye.  We read in Acts 1:9-11, “He was taken up into a cloud while they were watching, and they could no longer see Him.  As they strained to see Him rising into heaven, two white-robed men suddenly stood among them.  ‘Men of Galilee,’ they said, ‘why are you standing here staring into heaven?  Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday, He will return from heaven in the same way you saw Him go!'”

As we enter the Easter season, we are reminded of this wonderful fact: Jesus is coming again.  We wait and watch.  We don’t know when He will come, but we know it will happen.   He will return and take us with Him.

When I leave Jack, he looks longingly, but he doesn’t stand gazing after me every moment I’m away.  He’s very busy.  He has hole digging to do, hard work keeping the birds from landing in his yard, and of course, there’s play time with his ball and frisbee.  He keeps busy, but every so often, he takes time to stand and watch for my return.  He looks for the signs: the sound of my car, the sight of me walking toward the house.  Oh, delight, when he sees the signs of my return.

It is the same with us.  We are busy with the things of life, both the mundane necessities as well as the ministry aspects we are involved in: but every now and again, we take time to stop and reflect.  We look for the signs of His return.  The signs are there, of course.  He is coming again.

As the song reminds us, “Oh what a day of rejoicing that will be.”