“But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.”2 Peter 3:10
I remember coming back to Phoenix, Arizona from Chicago for the summer in 1996. I had come to see my girlfriend graduate high school, and I planned on spending time with her for a couple of months after. Instead, my girlfriend broke up with me in the first three weeks, so the purpose of why I came out for the summer was altered a bit. I got to spend time with my family, which I enjoyed, but the whole break-up thing was a bit of a bummer. I really wasted my time not working that summer, and I was anxious to get back home to Chicago and do something productive besides hanging out all the time. I felt a bit lazy that summer and I knew I had to do some type of work besides some of the little chores I was given.
My grandma lived in the inner city, and there was a housing initiative that allowed for her to get some upgrades to her house. The upgrades included a security door, painters and paint for the main house, and paint for the homeowners to do the trim themselves. The people from the city did not provide the best paint and brushes, but beggars can’t be choosers. My grandma wanted me to paint the trim and facia board of her house, and I was happy to do it as I stayed with her that whole summer and it was the least I could do. The paint was dropped off at the house a few days before I had to leave back to Chicago.
I was determined to do the work, but it seemed like things came up that were more important to me such as attending a concert and hanging out with my cousins. I was leaving to go home early on a Sunday morning, and it was Friday and I had not even started painting. The job was about a 14-hour job, and I did not have much time left. My cousin’s birthday was on Saturday and I planned on spending the day with him, but I was so far behind on the job. I started painting later in the afternoon on Friday and I was making progress, but we then left to go to celebrate my aunt’s birthday for dinner. I got after it the next day, but there was just not enough time in the day. I was supposed to be at my uncle’s house to celebrate my cousin’s birthday, but I just kept working trying to finish a job that just was not going to get done. I finally made it to my uncle’s after 5:00pm, without accomplishing my goal. I thought I would have plenty of time, but I simply waited too long, and I got on my flight the next morning never to finish the job. The time I thought I had went by quickly, and I learned time cannot be stopped or paused in any way.
I think of these verses and how quickly our Lord will come back to this earth. He will come as a thief in the night at a time we least expect it. There will be many such as myself with the paint project who think they have plenty of time to accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, but He will come and then it will be too late. The words of warning they were offered will ring in their ears and there will be regret and anguish over missing the opportunity of eternal life. They will not be able to go back, and there will be no time to accept him once He comes.
There will be Christians who say, “tomorrow I will do what it is right, tomorrow I will do what God will have me to do, tomorrow I will go back to church.” Those words will ring hollow and there will be regret when He comes again. I want to be caught working and living for Him instead of Him coming back and finding me living for myself.
Where are you today? Are you ready for His coming again? Do you have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ? How about you Christian? Are you prepared for His coming back? Are you living for Him, or are you living for this present world which will soon pass away? Are you praying for His second coming or are you nervous at the thought of it? He is coming soon, so may we be ready to meet Him in the clouds, and may we redeem the time He has given and live for Him.