Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny
For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a shout of command, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be suddenly caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will always be with the Lord. Therefore, encourage one another with these words. 1 Thessalonians 4.16-18
It sounds like a scene from a science fiction movie. But, rest assured, this is not fiction. The Lord Jesus will return to claim and gather his own church.
It is an event where all will be present. But for the unprepared, it will not be pleasant. Preparation has to be made ahead of time. We cannot wait until the day and expect to be accepted by the Lord. Jesus will come like a thief in the night, 1 Thessalonians 5.2. Sudden destruction will come on the disobedient who have denied the Lord.
However, Christians are sons of the light and day. The Lord’s coming should not take us by surprise. We must stay alert and be ready for his coming. As a soldier dressed for battle, Paul tells the Thessalonians to put on the breastplate of faith and love and as a helmet, our hope for salvation, 1 Thessalonians 5.8. The Christian is destined for gaining salvation through Jesus Christ. As that day approaches, we need to encourage one another to remain faithful. There is a crown waiting. Will you be ready?