Our scripture this week is Mark 13:24-37, taken today from the New King James Version (NKJV).
“But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars of heaven will fall, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. Then they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory. And then He will send His angels, and gather together His elect from the four winds, from the farthest part of earth to the farthest part of heaven. “Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender, and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. So you also, when you see these things happening, know that it is near—at the doors! Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away. “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is. It is like a man going to a far country, who left his house and gave authority to his servants, and to each his work, and commanded the doorkeeper to watch. Watch therefore, for you do not know when the master of the house is coming—in the evening, at midnight, at the crowing of the rooster, or in the morning— lest, coming suddenly, he find you sleeping. And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!”
Jesus has said many times that we must be ready for His return. In parables and conversation He tells us that He will be back and at that time God’s judgement will be rendered on us all. His point is to make sure we stay prepared for that day, not letting the world distract us from His holy purpose in our lives.
Human things are temporary, while the things Jesus offers us are everlasting. Why would we spend our gifts and our energy on things that have no eternal value? He tells us “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven” (Matthew 6:19-20).
Jesus wants us to strive for things that bring glory to God, not material possessions or power and position. He urges us to be ready when that day comes to leave this world and everything in it for a better and eternal connection. We must stay alert, remembering His promised salvation and live into that blessing.
Loving Lord, we are often distracted from Your purpose for us by the temptations of this world. Help us see the joy of life with You that lasts forever. Amen.