Over the years of my driving career, I have owned a number of vehicles, and like many other drivers, I named my cars. For whatever reason, their names have all started with "B". The other thing common to all my cars is that I posted a bumper sticker or decal or added a license plate with some gospel message on it. My favourite saying of all time on cars is "Expect the unexpected". This served not only to announce to those who asked that "the unexpected" was the return of our Lord Jesus to earth, but also to alert other drivers to my dyslexia, as I often signal right but turn left. Today, forty-some years later, my sister still reminds me "my right" when she is giving me directions.
Mark 13:32-33 – But of that day or that hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Take heed, watch; for you do not know when the time will come. (RSV)
For those of us in the know, Christ's return will not be unexpected. He told us that we had to watch and be ready. Jesus spoke of signs around us that would foretell His coming. I believe that every generation since has seen and experienced some of these omens. So like the folk song says, "People, get ready."
We get ready for Christ's return by "walking in the Spirit". We live in repentance for our sins, those of both commission and omission. We endeavour to live like Christ, in love for humankind. We "take time to be holy", spending time in prayer, studying God's Word, helping the less fortunate, and seeking to be mirrors of Christ's likeness.
As W.D. Longstaff wrote in the hymn:
- Take time to be holy, be calm in thy soul,
Each thought and each motive beneath His control;
Thus led by His Spirit to fountains of love,
Thou soon shalt be fitted for service above.
For us who claim to be Christ's, His return is not unexpected. I know that I will be reunited with Him, whether in this physical life or on my passing to the realm above where He will welcome me. I look forward to that day, even though, in many respects, I hope that it will still be some time away. There is so much more I feel called to do in His service. I might be surprised, just as drivers behind me are, but it is not unexpected.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, divine Son of our great and glorious creating and ruling God, thank You for coming to earth as a human being. Thank You for being an example of the great potentials and blessings of living according to God's will. Thank You for calling and choosing us. May we yield to the guiding of Your Holy Spirit and become Your living messengers and witnesses here on earth. May we truly make our hearts Your home and live for You. In Your name, we pray, Lord Jesus. Amen.