Looking forward to Jesus’ coming

Looking forward to Jesus’ coming

Can you remember looking forward to your birthday or Christmas morning as a small child? It is terribly exciting to know that, in a few short days, you will be opening presents and celebrating. There will be food and special activities to take part in. It will be a time of great joy that is so much better than an ordinary day!

Do we, truthfully, look forward to Jesus’ return like that? I know that we would like to say ‘yes’. Of course we’d like Jesus to come back! Yet, if we are really honest with ourselves, our anticipation of Jesus’ coming is often a little too muted. It is something we don’t think about very much. Perhaps if we are struggling right now or in tough circumstances, we might pray for Jesus to return, but for many of us it is something we don’t think about as much as we could. Most of us certainly could not truthfully compare our anticipation of Jesus’ return to that of a small child waiting for their birthday!

Why is that? Why does Jesus’ second coming often not grab our imagination? It could be one of two things:

  1. We might be too comfortable in this world. The things of this world are concrete and understandable; we know what the next purchase or experience will be like. If our heart is in the things of this world, we will always be kind of hoping that Jesus doesn’t come back for a while.
  2. We might not understand quite how great Jesus’ coming will be. Many of the Bible passages about heaven are quite metaphorical so it can be hard to know exactly what we are looking forward to. But, in essence, we are looking forward to being with our Lord. That sounds good but it might not grab our imagination like other things do.

How might we work on our anticipation of Jesus’ coming? We could start by spending more time praying and reading God’s word. I know that sounds basic, but if we value our relationship with God more now, we will look forward to the time when we see God face to face a great deal more.

We could also consider what it is that does excite us day by day. If we are only excited by things like the next holiday or purchase, that should convict us. It is good to rejoice in God’s good gifts to us now, but we need to keep this in perspective. We must thank God for the gifts while also looking forward to spending eternity with the Giver.