Are You Focused on the Prize?

“I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which
God has called me heavenwards in Christ Jesus.”
Phil. 3:14

In Matthew 24 Jesus told his disciples about His great return. He warns them to stay vigilant: “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come.” Matt. 24:42.

The “signs of our time” sure seem to parallel the many prophecies related to Christ’s return. The political climate in the Middle East alone is clearly a pre-cursor to what the Bible calls “end times”. With “end times” comes the opportunity for revival. For that, we can all rejoice. As the Holy Spirit moves in the lives of men, women, and evangelical churches around the globe, we can see the blessing associated with “the harvest”. In over twenty years of ministry, I’ve never seen so many folks open to God’s Word…or willing to contemplate their own mortality.

When we’re young we feel immortal, but as we age or become more focused on our life yet-to-come, there’s a shift. Facing the inevitable often prompts us to set up a will or pre-plan our funeral—both so helpful to loving survivors.

Winston Churchill pre-planned his funeral, which took place in Saint Paul’s Cathedral. He included many of the great hymns of the church and used the eloquent Anglican liturgy. At his direction, a bugler, positioned high in the dome of Saint Paul’s, intoned, after the benediction, the sound of “Taps”, a universal signal declaring the day is over. But then, a most dramatic shift: As soon as “Taps” concluded, another bugler, placed on the other side of the great dome, resounded the jubilant notes of “Reveille”, declaring, “It’s time to get up! It’s time to get up! It’s time to get up in the morning!”

That was Churchill’s testimony! At the end of history, the last note will not be “There is no more”, but rather, “The day has only just begun.” What an exciting promise for every true Christian!

Let’s be prepared, gather all who will come, and listen for the glorious sound of the trumpets. Jesus come!

The Power of Truth:

  • “He who testifies to these things says, ‘Yes, I am coming soon.’ Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.” Rev. 22:20
  • “At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory. And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.” Matt. 24:30-31
  • “Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.” Rev. 19:7

Suggestion for Prayer:

If you haven’t given much thought to your own mortality, if you’ve lost focus and forgotten to watch and pray, ask the Lord for His eternal perspective, so you can reach out to others with an urgency and passion for Christ.