Prepared and Ready

Leah DiPascal

Day: 18 | Plan: Luke

Today’s Reading: Luke 12:35-59

Luke 12:35-36 (NIV) “Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, like servants waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him.”

If Jesus returned to earth today, would we be prepared or caught off guard? Excited or on the verge of tears?

A glance at the headline news makes us wonder if Jesus’ return will be sooner than later. Reports of worldwide instability, increasing natural disasters and the rising tide of tension among the nations prompts the question, “What is happening to our world?”

This question should motivate us to become more aware (if we’re not already) of what Scripture says about Christ’s second coming.

Although we may not know the exact day or hour Jesus will return (Matthew 24:36), there are some things we do know:

Scripture clearly tells us what will happen right before Jesus returns:

“There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. People will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near” (Luke 21:25-28).

Scripture clearly tells us the location of Jesus’ return:

“On that day his [Jesus] feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem, and the Mount of Olives will be split in two from east to west, forming a great valley, with half of the mountain moving north and half moving south” (Zechariah 14:4).

Scriptures clearly tells us who will witness Jesus’ return:

“‘Look, he is coming with the clouds,’ and ‘every eye will see him, even those who pierced him’; and all peoples on earth ‘will mourn because of him.’ So shall it be! Amen. ‘I am the Alpha and the Omega,’ says the Lord God, ‘who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.’” (Revelation 1:7-8)

Maybe you consider Christ’s return a far-off event that won’t happen for thousands of years and definitely not in your lifetime. Or maybe you desperately hope He returns soon to fix the giant mess our world has gotten itself into. What does Jesus think about His return?

We can get important cues from the conversation He had with the disciples in today’s key verse when He told them, “Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, like servants waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him.

Do you sense the tension and urgency in Jesus’ words? He wanted to make sure the disciples were completely prepared and ready for Him. This was not something they could be lackadaisical about and neither should we.

Although we can’t change the details about Christ’s second coming, we must heed Jesus’ words and do a personal evaluation to make sure we’re absolutely ready and prepared for His return.

Here are some important ways we should prepare and be ready:

The first and most important way to prepare is to accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior. By confessing your sins and committing your life to Christ you are taking the most important step ever! The moment you say “yes” to all that Jesus offers you is the moment your life is sealed and fully secure in Him for eternity.

The next step is embracing a lifestyle that is holy and God honoring, as you grow in His grace and truth (2 Peter 3:18) This will help change your mindset so you can joyfully look forward to the day of Jesus’ return. (2 Peter 3:11b-12a) And as you learn the truth, God’s Word becomes a lamp that shines brightly before you and in you so that you become His light-bearer to a darkened world. (Psalm 119:105; Matthew 5:14-16)

Christ’s return is approaching and we must stand boldly for Him—not allowing the world’s opinions to weaken our love and dedication or diminish our personal testimony. (Matthew 10:32) Jesus is returning—there’s no doubt about it. So let’s make sure we’re fully prepared and ready to welcome Him with open arms at a moment’s notice with many others who are ready also.

Prayer: Father, I want to be fully prepared and ready for Jesus’ second coming. Help me not be so distracted by the things of this world that I forget to follow Your instructions. Help me to be watchful and on guard, living each day with a holy passion for You. Let the light of Your Word burn brightly before me and give me confidence to tell others about You. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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