They were looking intently up into the sky as He was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. "Men of Galilee," they said, "why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen Him go into heaven." Acts 1:10-11
About 20 years ago, a father who had taken his two children swimming in the Atlantic realized the tide was pulling them out to sea. Knowing his limitations, he told his daughter, the older of the two little ones, “Honey, I've got to get your brother to shore. When I do, I'll come back for you. I want you to float on your back till I return. You don’t have to swim. Just float on your back.” With that, the father swam away, brought his son to shore and, in a state of near exhaustion along with some lifeguards, went back to find his daughter. She wasn’t where they expected her to be; farther and farther they searched. After two hours, they spotted a little body floating in the water. She was okay.
After they brought her aboard the boat one of the lifeguards asked, “Were you frightened out in the ocean all by yourself?” She answered, “I wasn't afraid. My father told me to float on my back, and he told me that he would come back. I trusted him. He loves me and never lies.”
That's the attitude the Lord expects from His followers as we wait for Jesus to come back. He expects us, for as long as it takes, to remember that He loves us and hasn't forgotten us, and with that knowledge, to be unafraid. That's what the disciples did after Jesus went to heaven. They, who had once hidden themselves behind locked doors, now spent their days praising and blessing God. With faith in the Savior who had lived for them, died for them, and had risen for them, they were unafraid.
That's the way to wait for the returning Christ—praising and blessing God continually. No, I don’t know when Jesus' return will be. Nobody does. Nor am I going to tell you that you will have a trouble-free life as you wait for Jesus' return. In truth, Christians have more than their share of troubles and tribulations. Those problems are not going to magically go away just because you’re waiting for your Savior to come back. But I can tell you that Jesus is coming, and until He returns He will give you that which you need to deal with all problems and pains.
Excerpt from The Lutheran Hour sermon preached on May 23, 2004
The Prayer: Dear Lord, I know you have gone before me to release Your presence, and I know you are coming back to usher me into to the place that You have prepared for me. I thank You. In Jesus Name. Amen.
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