Around the Word in 365 Days, by Linda Sommer

The Repentance

1 Thessalonians 4:1-5:3 A new series of books has just been produced that speaks of the last days. The series is called Left Behind. These fiction novels, which are based on Scripture, speak of the day of "the Rapture,"a day many believe the saints of the Lord will meet Jesus in the air. That day is described in detail in this series. Trains, planes and cars will crash suddenly, and those left behind will not know that something supernatural has happened. Some members of families will be taken in the Rapture, and others will be left behind.

Our New Testament reading in 1 Thessalonians tells us that the Lord will come as a thief in the night. Suddenly, without warning, the trumpet blast from heaven will usher in that great day. The graves of saints will be opened, and both the dead and living believers will meet the Lord in the air to receive their glorified bodies.

The thought of such a scene is mind-boggling. Scripture, however, is clear, and it is written to comfort us. This scripture is often read at Christian funerals. If this scripture does not bring you comfort, chances are you have not acknowledged Jesus as your Lord and Savior. The question is not, "Will this really happen?" The question to ask is, "When this happens, will I be ready?" Paul in his letters makes it clear that we are to live each day expecting the Lord's return. If you knew for sure that Jesus would return today, how on earth would you live out your day?

Meditate on what you would do if you knew today was your last day on earth. I have thought of this often, and here are some of the things I think I would do. I would call all of my loved ones and friends and tell them how much I love them. I would spend a lot of time with the Lord in prayer and listening to His Word. I would try to reach as many of the unsaved as I could to tell them the wonderful story of Jesus' love for them. I would make sure I had confessed and repented of all of my sins.

Our youngest son Ray used to stand in our carport and look up to the sky. When I asked him what he was doing, he said, "I'm looking for Jesus in the clouds. He may come today." Truly Jesus may come today. Are you ready?

Lord, how different my days would be if I lived each day as if it were my last day on earth. Forgive me for my procrastination, my waste of time, my apathy and my busyness. Help me today to take time with You, and also to share the good news of Your love with those I meet today. Today may not be my last day on earth, but it may be the last day on earth for those I meet today.

READ: Jeremiah 16:16-18:23; 1 Thessalonians 4:1-5:3; Psalm 81:1-16; Proverbs 25:6-7

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