Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing. 2 Timothy 4:8
When I was a young teenager, I couldn’t wait until the day I was finally old enough to drive. When that day finally came, I couldn’t wait until I was old enough to finally get out of high school. Graduation came and went, and I couldn’t wait for the day when I would graduate from college, find a wife, and experience the thrill of married life. When I got married, I enjoyed every minute of it, but I began to look forward to having kids. Now that I have a couple kids, I cannot wait for the day when they are old enough to start families of their own and let me see what it feels like to be a grandfather. Somewhere before graduating from college, however, I gained the proper perspective on all those things. Unfortunately, it is perspective that most teenagers overlook.
Second Timothy tells us to look forward to the appearing of Jesus Christ. When I was a teenager, I certainly was ready for Christ to come back, but I just wanted to experience college life before He did. When I got into college, I fell into the same trap. College was a great experience, and I still wanted Christ to come back, but only after I have experienced what it was like to be married. That is when God got my attention. While I said that I was looking for Christ to come back, my thoughts did not prove it. I had fallen into the vicious cycle of wanting to experience just one more thing before He came – a cycle which could continue through my entire life if I did not stop it.
As a teenager and young adult, these are the days to live for Jesus Christ, and to look for His appearing. There is nothing wrong with wanting to experience college, married life, or children, but all those things must take their proper place in line behind looking for the coming of Jesus Christ. We must want Him to come back more than we want all those other things. Besides, isn’t Heaven going to be much better than even the best things we could enjoy on earth?
Jesus may tarry and allow you to experience many of the things that He has now allowed me to experience. I would still love to experience all the things that I have not yet experienced, just not at the expense of putting them above looking for Him to come. I certainly look forward to the opportunity to wear the crown I can gain from loving His appearing more than I look forward to the experience of seeing my kids get married, or of feeling what it must be like to be a grandparent. Let’s start living now as if we really want Christ to come back today.
Quote of the day: “Live now like you’ll wish you had then.”