Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Being Left Behind and Wishing You Weren't

Bedtime was later than I'd intended last night. When the train rolled through our town just after 5 am, I awoke, bleary-eyed and wishing I'd gone to bed on time. Maggie and Mamie, my little high-maintenance dogs, were asleep at the foot of my bed. 

As usual, Maggie went to the screened porch to greet the dawn. Mamie, however, wanted to sleep a little longer. 

"Mamie, I'm going to get coffee. Do you want to go potty?"

She lifted her head, tilted it to one side, and stared at me. 

"You want to go?" 

She lowered her head again, snuggled back into a little ball, and closed her eyes. Sleep was clearly her priority.

I went downstairs for coffee. A slice of bread was still in the toaster when I heard a familiar sound. "Arf. Arf. Arf." 

Mamie was relentless. She'd suddenly realized she'd been left behind, and she wasn't happy about it.

Her response reminded me of a lot of people. She'd had a chance to go with me, but she'd ignored it. 

When Jesus left this earth after his resurrection, He made certain His followers knew one thing. "I"m coming back to get you. You need to live ready."

He described that wonderful day. He will appear in the sky, riding on a cloud, and everyone will see Him. A loud trumpet will sound, and everyone will hear it. Angels will be sent to gather His people, and all His disciples will go. No delay. No waiting around.

Those who aren't disciples will be left behind, because, when the trumpet sounds, all the deciding will have already been done. When people look around and realize the followers of Jesus have gone, it'll be too late to wish they'd followed Him. 

Now is the time to decide about Jesus. Now is the time to take a close look at our lives. Do we truly follow Him or just talk about it? Are we a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ or a fan of the concept? Are we a pew-sitter or a passionate servant? 

Some will go. Some will stay. Which one will you be?

"And He shall send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other." Matthew 24:31
Note: There are some people who disagree with this theology. A little earlier in this passage, Jesus describes a great tribulation and suggests that this "taking away" will be at some point after the tribulation has occurred, or at least after it has begun. I'm not writing to argue the point of pre-, -post-, or mid-tribulation theology. Some people believe the "taking away" will be for lost people headed to judgment. One day, everyone will know what viewpoint is correct. The point is that Jesus will return and all the deciding will be past. We need to live ready.
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