I’m sitting in Lincoln Park in downtown Chicago, enveloped by the sights, sounds and smells of the city… surrounded by the masses of humanity. Teenagers playing frisbee. Joggers jogging. Kids practicing baseball. Sweethearts walking. Dogs on walks with their owners. And me. Sitting, reading, reflecting, praying.
In many ways, my thoughts are exciting. In others, sobering.
Jesus is teaching His disciples about His return. His words are found in Matthew 24, Mark 13 and Luke 21.
“The Son of Man will appear in the sky, and the people of the earth will mourn. They will see Him arrive in the clouds, with power and great glory. He will be given all honor and authority to rule the nations. People of every language will serve under His reign forever, and His Kingdom will never be destroyed. When these things begin to happen, look up and be glad, for your redemption is near.”
What an amazing image. Christ’s return. His Kingdom. His reign. His glory.
People of every language serving the King. I wonder how many languages are spoken in this city?
“Look up and be glad!”
Look up! Look to Christ. Long for Christ. He’s coming!
Be glad! God wins. Satan loses. Evil is vanquished. We are victorious!
But Jesus says that in that moment the “people of this earth will mourn.” They’re lost. They’re doomed. They’re finished. Our beginning is their end. The crushing weight of despair buries their souls under a mountain of guilt, regret and despair.
But we are His ambassadors. We carry the message of life. We carry the message of hope. We carry the message of the victorious King.
So while I look up, I will also look out. Father, help me to see the hurting. Help me to see the lost. Help me to see… and serve… and speak… HOPE!
Look up and be glad! And bring others to the feet of the King, that they may look up and be glad too!
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