When the trumpet sounds and the church is called home, will you be ready? Maybe a better question is, ...are you ready now? Don't panic. Be prepared.
I invite you to read all of Matthew Chapter 24 along with this short study, though my focus today is on verses 36-44.
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When the last hour comes
Where will I be...
When the last hour comes?
When the world is at odds and hope a small sliver,
Will I sink in the shadows or bathe in the river?
When gone are the days of seek and share,
Will still my faith in God be there?
If every eye has turned away and hearts become like stone,
Will I be strong enough to stand, if now I stand alone?
When freedom’s fare requires my soul,
And others flock to claim it...
Will I be still and know that God is coming soon to save it?
Where will I be?
When the last hour comes, and others turn against me?
“Stand strong my child, the day is nigh,
when heaven's gates you shall see.”
Don't be afraid
We are in the last of days, the signs are plain as day. But, where do we stand on this battleground? Think for a moment...where would I want to be, if the Lord were to suddenly appear beside me. Would He want me watching that movie, reading that book, going to that place? Would He be proud of the friends I keep or the way I designed my favorite social media page? Would I be happy to sit and have a talk with my savior or would I run from His presence in shame?
Don't get caught up in the shame of past sins, remember those were forgiven the moment your accepted Christ as your Savior. I'm talking about right now, this minute. Are you ready to meet your Savior? You don't have to be perfect, in fact He knows you are not. He's expecting that! But, believers are called to make a change in their hearts and that change is reflected in your life. Sometimes it requires you to make the hard decisions and stand against others who don't agree, even when they are the ones you love.
Be strong! God doesn't leave you alone in these battles. He is giving you the strength you need every step of the way. The enemy may try to distract you with the worries of tomorrow, but God is already there taking care of it so focus instead on today. The state of the world at present shows that we are heading for harder times than we could imagine. As the lines in the sand become deeper and those we love my not be on our side, stand strong and pray for them. Pray for God's perfect timing and pray for direction on the decisions that are coming for us.
Faith instead of fear
Faith is knowing the God is working where you cannot see Him and being willing to act on that faith without knowing where it will lead you. Listen for the still small voice and He will guide you. I'm not saying that He will literally whisper instructions for your day into your ear, but if you are seeking Him, He WILL speak to you in His timing.
Remember the battle ground we are standing on? For each of us the battle is unique. For some, it might be constant prayers for an unsaved fried or family member. For others, it might be pressure to follow the path that society is pushing us toward. Some are simply afraid to tell anyone what they believe because they might be seen as different or dangerous. Don't let fear set you on a path that could lead you away from God. He promised us that we would have trials and that He would never leave us in those trials.
““Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. But he who endures to the end shall be saved.”
Matthew 24:9-13 NKJV
did you catch that last line...
But he who endures to the end shall be saved.”
Enduring to the end means being faithful to God. Stand up for Him today and know that He is standing beside you, and when you are ready to faint, He is holding you up.
If you struggle with fear, here are a few verses I find helpful in those times. I hope you will find comfort in them too.
“Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’”
“For I, the LORD your God, will hold your right hand, Saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.’”
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.”
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.””
I have chosen not to include a craft for this study. If, in the future I am inspired with a craft that fits with this message I will add the link and let you all know.
Have a very Merry Christmas