I had a moment this morning.
The Holy Spirit broke my heart.
In. Trader. Joe’s.
Here in Raleigh, NC we are preparing for what could be a very devastating Hurricane to make landfall on Thursday night.
I was in Target this morning getting a few supplies to stock up for the storm. Water was gone, bread was sparse, the lines snaked around the registers and down the center aisle of the store. The tension of those around me with full carts of granola bars and diapers was beginning to creep up.
I next went to Trader Joe’s to finish off my shopping list (gotta eat non-GMO in a hurricane, too y’all!). Water was gone and the aisles were rapidly filling with people scrambling to figure out in their head what meals could be prepped with no electricity (hence why I left with 4 boxes of cereal and a bottle of wine.)
As I stood in a very long line overhearing the conversations of those who were already lucky enough to be conversing with the cashiers, the one thing everyone was talking about in hurried, slightly panicked tones, was the impending hurricane. The cashier would ask, “are you all prepared?”, “have you seen the latest doppler update?”, “have you tried CVS to find water?”, “are you going to be somewhere safe?”.
And then it hit me.
As the lines around me got both wider and deeper with people ready to check out with their emergency food stocks, My Heart Broke.
A human being with a degree in Meteorology tells us that a storm is coming and We. Need. To. Prepare. And what do we do? We take it seriously. We spring into action. We grab our checklist, dig through battery baskets, scramble to locate flashlights, fill up our gas tanks and propane tanks and water jugs and tune our TV to the weather channel and panic when we see Jim Cantorie show up….and…and…and…
My heart broke.
We prepare more in 1 week to make sure our Earthly bodies will be safe, protected, and comfortable JUST IN CASE a hurricane passes through our town than we do in an entire lifetime preparing our souls to come before the creator of the universe (yes, the same one who made that hurricane right there in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean) one day.
My heart broke.
We look at a chart and attempt to predict with pinpoint accuracy the moment the first breeze from a hurricane will whisper on our doorstep, all the while living in complete disregard for the fact that there is a much greater warning at stake for our lives here.
“Look, I am coming soon! Blessed is the one who keeps the words of the prophecy of this book.” (Rev22:7)
The very God who holds this storm in His hands has given us very specific instruction that His son is returning soon and that we need to prepare. And what do we do? We stand down. We see the brokenness around us and turn away. We see the incredible need for Jesus in our world and yet refuse to speak truth over those around us.
“Look, I am coming soon, and my reward is with me to repay each person according to his work.” (Rev 22:12)
God used the very last chapter in the very last book of the BIBLE to tell us to be prepared for the return of His son, Jesus Christ.
“The time is near!” (Rev 22:10)
We are so incredibly eager to strike up a conversation with a perfect stranger in a check out line over the coming storm and wish them “good luck” as they prepare, yet are we even willing to speak the truth of the gospel into the loved ones around us who will face the same throne of God one day? (I’m majorly including myself here on this one! #Guilty) We prep, plan, and connect as soon as we see storm coming our way, yet God tells us very clearly in His word that we are to be prepping our souls and bringing those around us with us for the return of His son.
“Yes, I am coming soon.” (Rev 22:20)
In Matthew 24:42-44 Jesus declares, “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.”
If you turned on the news today and the reporter told you that Jesus was returning to Earth on Thursday night, what would you do to prepare? Would you panic? Would you be prepared? Who would you tell? Who would you warn? What if we were as enthusiastic about spiritual prep as we are about Hurricane prep? What if we had the same sense of urgency about making sure our friends knew about the good news of Jesus as we did to check in to make sure they were prepared for a storm?
He. Is. Coming. Soon.
“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.” Revelation 22:12