Keep awake and watch and pray” (Mark 14:38 Amplified)

Try to imagine Jesus’ return. Try to imagine Him coming to bring His people Home to Heaven. If you read through Revelation you can see that it’s going to be some day! Our King of kings and Lord of lords rides on horseback, with His angel-army following close. An angel, standing in the sun, heralds Him in. As soon as He stands on the horizon God’s children gather together, singing His praises. They have been watching and waiting for this day year after year, day in and day out and they’re ready. They’re a prepared people. They’ve done their duty, and they’re all set to be whisked away.

Now, imagine this. Jesus arrives on earth, but something is not quite right. No crowds come to meet Him; no-one leaves their house to greet Him. Jesus’ disciples should be dancing before their Lord, unable to contain their joy, but they’re nowhere to be seen. Singing should fill the silence. Instead Jesus is left alone with His thoughts. “Where are My people?” He wonders. “I warned them of My return!” Jesus goes to investigate, but He doesn’t have to go far to find out what’s wrong. Everyone is sound asleep! Nightmare.

Think upon these things…

Rewind!  Read over the first couple of paragraphs again. As you do stop after every sentence and try to imagine it.  Try to imagine what Jesus’ response would be firstly when He finds His people are ready and waiting, and secondly when He finds His Church sound asleep.

This has to be my worst nightmare. I don’t want to be caught sleeping on the job when Jesus returns; I want to be doing my duty. That’s what we’re called to do, day in and day out, until He returns to take us Home. I must admit that I’m not ready to go Home just yet; God has a work for me to do. You too, so we’d better get on with it! We need a wake-up call; we have to realise that this is serious. Jesus is going to return when we least expect it so we should watch out. If we don’t we could be caught out.

Ask yourself?

What has God called you to do?  Are you going about it?  If not, why not?!

Read through Mark 14:32-42 before you read any further.  Jesus and His disciples went to Gethsemane, one of Jesus’ prayer hotspots.  Jesus decided to leave Peter, James and John to watch and wait while He went on alone to pray in private.  On His return He found the three sound asleep.  Jesus said to Simon Peter, “are you asleep?  Have you not the strength to keep awake and watch [with Me for] one hour?” (Mark 14:37 Amplified).  Jesus asks the same of us, His command still stands.  We too are meant to watch and wait.  You can see from the story that this happened three times. Jesus would return and find His disciples sleeping. His warning was to “Keep awake and watch and pray” (Mark 14:38 Amplified).  This warning should serve as a wake-up call.  Will He find you sleeping, or serving?  It’s up to you.

We’re called to be watchmen; we shouldn’t be silent. “But as for me, I watch in hope for the LORD, I wait for God my Saviour” (Micah 7:7 NIV). Can we say the same? We should be heralding Him in, praying His Kingdom come! Jesus Himself said “Behold, I am coming soon!” (Revelation 22:7 NIV). He’s coming quickly; we had better quicken our pace. We have to speed it up a bit as there’s so much work to do and we’re running out of time. Jesus may not have dated the day He comes through the clouds, but one thing we can be sure of is that we have a work to do before then, so we shouldn’t slack off it. Whatever God has called you to do, don’t put it off for another day but go at it with full force. Tomorrow may be just around the corner but that doesn’t make it a dead cert. Time is ticking, make sure it doesn’t run out on you. Make the most of it!

Think upon these things…

Watch out. Don’t be caught out.

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