Big Storm Forecast

prepThe weather forecasters are having a party ‘round here because a BIG one is coming. Their prognostications indicate a major March snow storm over the Northeast states tomorrow. We are expecting more than a foot of windblown snow.  Traffic will come to a standstill. The electrical power could go out and kids will celebrate having a couple of days at home from school. Supermarkets will sell out on milk, bread, and eggs today. What’s with that? Does everyone suddenly start to eat a lot of French Toast during blizzards? Yes, I am paying attention. I’ll make sure to have gas on hand for my plow and generator!   I’m glad for the meteorologists who help us to anticipate and prepare for weather events even as I am amused by the hyperbole that creeps into their language. This is a “Snow-pocalyse,” according to one of them. Really?  It is probably going to be a big storm, but in a couple of days we will have shoveled it out of the way and returned to the normal routines of our lives.

Are you prepared for the real storms of life that will inevitably blow through your life? Exactly three years ago, Bev and I were just getting inklings of the cancer storm that was coming; one that ended her life here and that turned mine upside down.  I am ever so thankful that our marriage was prepared for those awful 20 months of illness, that our faith rested on the Solid Rock, Christ Jesus, that we had a community of friends and family from which we could draw support.  Whatever would these last three years have looked like without preparation? It is unimaginable to me.

We cannot stop the storms from blowing over us, but we can be ready to face them.  Thinking people will not try to make a grocery run at the height of the storm on Tuesday. They will make time to do it today, even as the sun shines.  Similarly, now is the day of salvation, now is the time to build faith, to create a network of friend.

Jesus told a story about the arrival of the Kingdom of God. The main point of the story is preparation, anticipating the demands of what’s ahead. Read on.  “Then the Kingdom of Heaven will be like ten bridesmaids who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. The five who were foolish didn’t take enough olive oil for their lamps, but the other five were wise enough to take along extra oil. When the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and fell asleep.

“At midnight they were roused by the shout, ‘Look, the bridegroom is coming! Come out and meet him!’ “All the bridesmaids got up and prepared their lamps. Then the five foolish ones asked the others, ‘Please give us some of your oil because our lamps are going out.’ “But the others replied, ‘We don’t have enough for all of us. Go to a shop and buy some for yourselves.’ “But while they were gone to buy oil, the bridegroom came. Then those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was locked. Later, when the other five bridesmaids returned, they stood outside, calling, ‘Lord! Lord! Open the door for us!’

 “But he called back, ‘Believe me, I don’t know you!’ “So you, too, must keep watch! For you do not know the day or hour of my return.” (Matthew 25:1-13, NLT)

Don’t overthink His story.
Jesus is forecasting His return. Some of us will meet Him when the trumpet of God announces His return to the Earth to bring the Kingdom. Others will meet Him when we step through the portal of death and into the gates of Glory.  If we have lived in a way that ignores the Spirit, that is taken up with food, pleasure, and the urgencies of daily life – so that we are asleep;  we will not be ready to welcome Him.  But, if we have had the right priorities and walked in His provision, that Day will find us rejoicing, invited in to celebrate with our Savior King.  Your wife’s faith, your parent’s faith, your pastor’s faith – will not be enough in that Day. Sobering? Yes, it is.

So, let’s be prepared. No, that is not hyperbole. The truth is that life will change, storms will come, and the King will call us into His Presence. Are you prepared?

Here is a word from the Word.  “As God’s partners, we beg you not to accept this marvelous gift of God’s kindness and then ignore it. For God says, “At just the right time, I heard you. On the day of salvation, I helped you.” Indeed, the “right time” is now. Today is the day of salvation.” (2 Corinthians 6:1-2, NLT)

________

People Get Ready

People get ready
There’s a train it’s coming
You don’t need no baggage
You just get on board
All you need is faith
To hear the diesels humming
Don’t need no ticket no
You just thank the Lord

 People get ready
For the train to Jordan
Picking up passengers
From coast to coast
Faith is the key
Open the doors for boarding
There’s room for all
For them that love Him most

 There ain’t no room
For the hopeless sinner
Who would hurt all mankind
Just to save His own
Have pity on those
Whose chances are thinner
‘Cause there’s no hiding place
From the Kingdom’s throne

Curtis Mayfield© 1964 Warner-Tamerlane Publishing Corp. (Admin. by Word Music Group, Inc.)

CCLI License # 810055

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