I’m fixated on the sky. OK, maybe obsessed. There are more cloud pictures in my phone than anything else.
The magnificent display morning and night takes my breath! When Psalm 19:1 reminds me, “The heavens declare the glory of God, the skies proclaim the work of His Hands,” it’s the gospel truth!
The clouds are marvelous, the sunsets, too. Isn’t it sweet that while overseeing the universe, God takes time to paint the horizon with colors only He could design?
I’m watching the sky, but there’s something else I’m watching for at this time of the year…
Many Bible scholars believe that Jesus will return for the church during the Jewish Feast of Trumpets. Some call it “the rapture” though that term is not mentioned in the Bible. The Feast of Trumpets is an annual celebration of thanksgiving held in September.
Years ago, the trumpet was the signal for the field workers to come into the Temple. The high priest stood on the southwestern parapet of the Temple and blew the trumpet so that it could be heard in the surrounding fields. At that instant, the faithful would stop harvesting even if there were more crops to bring in and leave immediately for the worship services.
Numerous Scriptures speak of trumpets. “…We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised and we will be changed,” 1 Corinthians 15:51-52.
First Thessalonians 4:16-18: “For the Lord Himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.” It doesn’t say “scare one another with these words” but “encourage one another”.
To be honest, it used to scare me more than encourage me. Years ago, older-than-me people would talk about the Lord coming back and I thought, “Whoa now, I have a whole lotta livin’ still to do!” I loved Jesus and all, but I wasn’t ready for life to be over. As I have grown and grown closer to God, I realize it’s all about Him. The thought of being in heaven WITH Him sounds better every day!
Lots of Bible verses talk about how life will be just before Christ returns, too. First Timothy 3 tells us: “There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God...” Sounds like it was ripped from today’s headlines!
If we really thought the Lord was coming back this September … how would we act/live, what would we do?!
Of course, nobody knows the exact hour or day when Jesus will return. It might be this year; it might be next. (PLEASE, PLEASE BE THIS YEAR!!!)
Meanwhile, I’m keeping my eyes on the sky!
Dawn Reed is a newspaper columnist and pastor's wife in Prestonsburg. Reach her at email@example.com