Last night Julie and I finally sat down and propped up our feet. We were both tired. We talked about what needed to be done the following day. I said, “It seems like last Monday was two months ago.”
“Last Monday” we closed on a new home. The house is new to us, but in actuality, it is 110 years old. The move, by design, is going slow. We did not make the big move of furniture until Saturday and did not spend the night there until then. We still have a lot of little boxes to move, but nothing large. We’ll be going back to the trailer every few days, cleaning up and packing the odds and ends until all is settled. Three piles are developing – take, throw away, and sell. The county has a huge Covered Bridge Festival every October, so I reckon the “garage sale” signs will be going up then.
Along with most everyone else, moving day is a dreaded thing. Ten years ago our home was struck by lightning and burnt down (someday I will write about that). Shortly thereafter, we purchased a used mobile home, donated it to the church, and moved in. At that time I told Julie, “I have one more move left in me.” What we are experiencing now is that move; I think.
Unless I have another earthly move before I die my next move will take place much faster – in the twinkling of an eye; 1 Corinthians 15:52, “In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.”
Seen in movies, written about in books, preached about in sermons, the rapture of the church has been in the public eye since the late ’60s. Critics claim that all believers being taken at once, basically vanishing off the face of the planet at the same time, is preposterous. Disagreements about the rapture are not only between Christian and non-Christian but also between Christians themselves. Some will claim the Biblical wording is symbolic; not literal. There are even some who claim the event has already taken place.
Whenever anyone makes the announcement he or she are leaving the natural questions would be, “Where are you going? When are you leaving?”
Over the course of time, thousands of people have made a date for the rapture attempting to answer the “when” question. The problem with setting a date is that Jesus said, “But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only” (Matthew 24:36).
The timing of the rapture is unknown, but Christ did give us hints, or signs to watch to indicate the time is approaching. Just like watching the leaves on the trees change from green to the beautiful red, orange, and yellows of fall tell us that colder weather and snow is on the horizon. We see the leaves change and we know winter is coming. We do not know the date or time of the first snowfall, but we know the event is not far away.
Some of the “changing leaves” we should watch for in anticipation of the rapture are an increase in the intensity of natural disasters, wars, and rumors of wars, political turmoil, and economic problems of a national and global scale. The major event we needed to watch for has already taken place – the restoring of Israel in 1948 (Ezekiel 37).
The answer to the “where” question is much more certain. 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17, “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” When the rapture takes us out of here, we are leaving to spend eternity with Jesus Christ.
I do dread moving, all the packing, the putting of stuff into trucks, the bending and twisting attempting to get large heavy objects around corners and through doorways, then the unloading. Yes, moving is a wonderful blessing once all the dust is settled, but a move itself is not something people usually look forward to. However, a day is coming I will move but not need to pack because I will not need to take any earthly possessions with me.
A day is coming when Jesus Christ will appear in the air; the trumpet will sound, I will hear his voice say, “Come up hither!” It is my prayer, my hope, and my desire that my next moving day comes soon.