"When they see the smoke of her burning, they will exclaim, 'Was there ever a city like this great city?'" (Revelation 18:18)
This vacation was going to be special. The couple had lived in the big city for more than five years. They had never taken time to take in all the sights. Now they would. Two weeks' vacation. They were going to stay home and go out every afternoon and evening and see the sights of their home town. They were both looking forward to it.
They soon discovered their city had two personalities. It had one personality in the daytime. It had another personality in the nighttime. The city of the daytime was all hustle and bustle. It was business. It was concerned primarily about the economics of supply and demand. It seemed to be in a hurry to get to an unknown destination. The city at night was different. It seemed to move along leisurely, at times with a kind of hesitant fear. It seemed to be trying to escape reality. Dancing away the blues and drinking away loneliness was the apparent mood. It was a city with pockets of violence -- the acting out of anger from troubled minds. It was a combination of night lights and darkness. It was fun and violence. It was happiness and at the same time scary. They had been used to the day city. But the city at night was somewhat a whole new experience.
Lord, night life is something else. They were glad that their permanent city was the heavenly Jerusalem. They were glad, too, that they had taken this special vacation. They also felt they could stand with people of God (a picture of the church) in God's book of Revelation which says, "When they see the smoke of her burning they will exclaim, 'Was there ever a city like this great city?'"
PRAYER: Lord, the cities You have given us are good for vacationers. Send Your Spirit to build our faith to see the city and to think of the eternal city to come. In Jesus' name. Amen.
(Taken from "Lord, Vacation Time is Here" (out of print), copyright 1977, International Lutheran Laymen's League.)
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