It will happen in a moment, in the blink of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, those who have died will be raised to live forever. And we who are living will also be transformed. (1 Corinthians 15:12)
Relate: Someday this verse is going to be fulfilled. Some day those graves are going to open and both the living and the dead will meet our God. There is debate as to exactly when it will happen. Some say it will happen at the beginning of what we call the tribulation. Others say it will occur in the middle or at the end of it. Even the whats and hows of what is called the rapture are the source of endless fun and debates and best selling (yet horribly written) book series. That is fine. Some people like to invest plenty of time creating end times charts and timelines going into specific detail of exactly what will happen, when, and in what order. These same people will then argue their charts over and against the charts of some other chart makers who disagree and have their own timelines to show why. That is fine. Have fun with those charts. I tend to view myself as an end-times agnostic. He has given us a glimpse of a few of the major events but the specific whens and hows, the details, He kept to Himself. He is a God of surprises and when He came the first time those who should have known the best missed it because they were so completely convinced they knew exactly what His coming would be like.
No matter when and how it happens, no matter how different the times of His return will be from everybody’s charts, the fact remains that someday it will happen. When it does, however it does, I want to be dead. By the time that trumpet sounds, I want to be in the grave. Why? Because the dead will rise first and I want to get there as quickly as possible.
React: Don’t get me wrong, I love this life. In it, there is wonder and beauty everywhere I look. Everywhere I turn my eyes I see reflections of His majesty. If I am searching for it, I can see a shadow of the image of God in the people I talk to. He has gifted me with a mind to learn and grow and I love putting that mind, as well as this body to exercise. But this body is breaking down. This mind forgets. The flowers I see wilt and die. The image of God found in others is tarnished with sin. This world is not as it was meant to be. As great as everything is, it can be greater. It will be greater. I have a responsibility in which I find fulfillment in helping to advance God’s Kingdom here on earth. Even more important, however, I must never forget that one day, the trumpet will sound.
Maranatha! God, come quickly. Let that trumpet sound. As much as I love this life, I can’t wait for the day when You call me home. But as long as I am still here, help me to continue to work. Let me live my life with the understanding that Your return is imminent, but help me to continue to work for You as if that day is a long way off. Even so, Lord, come quickly.