Longing

These past few weeks, whenever I’m not with my wife, I compulsively check my phone. I watch it. Check and double check to make sure that I have it. And that it’s on.

I never relax. Never let my guard down.

 

 

You see, she is pregnant. And she looks like she could go any minute.

 

 

While we wait, we work, busily, around the house. Every night before bed I arrange every toy, every piece of furniture, every item we own into its precise place.

I wash all of the dishes, sweep all of the floors, take out the trash, and mop.

In the past couple of weeks I have shampooed the carpets in the kids’ rooms twice, organized our garage, traded out our couch, swapped out our loft beds for bunk beds, and made some small repairs around the house. All in the name of Baby #4.

 

 

Why?

Quiet anticipation. Nervous anticipation. Excitement. Eagerness and zeal.

Waking up every morning wondering, “Is today the day?”

I can’t sleep. I toss and turn, the same question running through my mind: “Could today be the day?”

We try to use every minute wisely, so we’re not caught unprepared. So we know we’ve made every effort.

I’ve had to limit my availability and turn down speaking opportunities. We have backup plans for everything.

I’ve stopped responding “Yes” to requests, and instead, “Lord willing.”

 

And I realize:

This is the way I am supposed to look forward to the return of Jesus.

 

This is the way Scripture describes it.

That is the heart of someone who longs for Him. Waking up every morning, wondering in excitement “Could today be the day?”

Walking around, distracted, because our eyes are on the heavens, waiting for them to open up.

Always having a backup plan. This is what James describes in the fourth chapter of his tiny epistle:

Now listen, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.’ Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, ‘If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that’” (13-15).

 

We are not to sit on our hands staring at the sky, but we are to busy ourselves with His work while we eagerly await His arrival.

Paul says we should long for Him. Long for His return. (2 Timothy 4:8)

 

Do you long for His return?

Do you dream about it?

Does it keep you up at night?

Do you stare at your ceiling, thinking, “Today could be the day! I’m ready. Today could be the day! I’m ready.”

Or do you kind of wish He’d stay gone a little longer?

 

 

When I was in college, the thought of Jesus’ return haunted me. It bothered me. I knew I didn’t long for it, because, while I was a fan of Him and His Kingdom, I kind of wanted some time to start building my kingdom. I was young. I didn’t want that opportunity robbed. I wanted to build a little of my kingdom here first. I wanted to have a house. And a wife. And a family. And a career. Then, near retirement, if He wanted to come with His Kingdom, that’d be fine, since at that point, I’d nearly be done with my own.

Isn’t that how most of us live?

 

This last month of pregnancy has been convicting me. It has been reorienting me around how I am supposed to long for Him. Working myself silly to make sure I’m ready, but eager to go at any moment.

 

Do you think of Him that way?

Do you long to see Him?

Are you ready?

 

If not, you can be. Trust God now. Amen.

 

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