One week ‘till the holidays begin – am I really ready?
“But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap.
I’m not as ready as I want to be for the celebration of the holiday.
I still have to put the finishing touches on the message I’ll be sharing with my church Wednesday evening and Thursday morning.
I still have a few greetings cards to get ready for mailing.
I still have some menu items for our family Thanksgiving dinner that I need to prepare.
I still have some household cleaning and various chores to take care of (and delegate) in anticipation of our oldest son coming home for the holiday.
It seems to me that it can be very easy to be weighed down emotionally and physically with all the things that I have set myself to do in anticipation of celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday.
And in addition to the emotional and physical weight can soon come spiritual weighing down.
Jesus warns us to be “watching” that we don’t get this way. And while Jesus is talking about self-indulgence – both the harmful (drunkenness) and not harmful (dissipation) kind – the “cares of this life” can include our anticipated celebration of holidays.
In the narrower view, I can be so weighed down that I miss the joy of the holiday. I miss the joy of the gathering of my closest loved ones. I miss the happiness of feasting together, talking together, and laughing together.
In the wider view, all these things – as well as anything else that tempts me to focus on myself instead of others and God – can so weigh me down that I’m not ready for the Second Coming of Christ.
It surprises me how often I don’t think about the Second Coming of Christ. I suppose it is because it has been so long since Jesus promised to return – we’re closing in on 2000 years now.
But I should want the Second Coming of Christ to be first and foremost in my mind and heart. For the Second Coming is the ultimate goal of my life. I want to reach that day more than anything else.
And as the ultimate goal, it shapes everything else I do. It is why I write, why I preach, why I teach. It is also why I love my wife and children, love my church, and do what I do for my family and church.
So, if I can keep the Second Coming of Christ – or as Jesus describes it, the day the kingdom of God comes near – it will help me to love what I do and who I am with even more.
As we gather this Thanksgiving with our families, I pray that we will not be weighed down by the cares of the world and will be lifted up by the love and strength of Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ, who has promised to return one day to take all believers to heaven – the eternal feast!
Heavenly Father, as I prepare for the holiday season, send your Holy Spirit that my heart and mind are focused on Christ and my loved ones. I pray I will enjoy the holidays and will be able to share that joy with all I meet; in Jesus’ name. Amen.
© 2017 True Men Ministries