with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God,
and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who
are still alive and are left will be caught up together
with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in
the air. And so we will be with
the Lord forever.”
I Thessalonians 4:16-17 (NIV)
The videos showing a family member coming home from the military to surprise those they love get to me every time. I automatically get out the tissues when one pops up on the internet or on television.
They all make me cry. The son who thinks he is throwing a pitch to his catcher, when the catcher’s mask is suddenly pulled off to reveal Dad. The wife who has been told she is to receive an award for her husband in his absence, only to turn around and see him running toward her. The child in class who looks up from her deskwork and yells “Mommy, you’re back!” as her mother peeks in the door and falls to her knees to scoop up her daughter.
The stories behind those beautiful reunions are similar. Family members have been gone for several weeks or months, serving their country in the military. Some have been able to Skype occasionally as well as talk on the phone; others have not been able to communicate with each other except through mail.
They also share one common bond: none of those getting the surprise reunion had any idea it was being planned. They knew they would see each other again but had no idea exactly when it would occur
Today’s Scripture from I Thessalonians has become sweeter than ever to me in recent years. Paul is speaking about Christ’s return and he is explaining what will happen. From this passage we learn that Jesus will be the one leading the glorious get-together. First He will collect His children who have passed away and then those who are still alive. Both groups “will be caught up together . . . in the clouds.” Wow!
Can you imagine it? Hugging a spouse or child again! Or smiling as you once again see a parent or grandparent! I can only imagine the hugs and laughter and smiles that will roar through the clouds at that glorious reunion.
Please do this for me: think of those special people in your life who have passed away. Now, picture meeting them again face to face.
Just as the military families don’t know when the reunion will take place, we Christians do not know the exact date. But we DO know it’s going to happen one day.
Oh the smiles and laughter as we all shout “best reunion ever!”
Father, oh the hope that you give with your promise that we will be together with our loved ones who knew you. Thank you for that joyful reunion. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
R.A.P. it up . . .
Have you had doubts about seeing a loved one again?
Re-read today’s verses of Power and picture in your mind what the beautiful reunion will be like with loved ones who have passed away.
Praise the Lord for His death and resurrection that make heavenly reunions possible.
I Thessalonians 4:16-17 (NIV) “For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.”
John 14:2-3 (NIV) “In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.”
I Corinthians 2:9 (NIV) “ . . . No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him . . .”
(For more of Nancy Hughes' writing, check out her blog Encouragement from the War Room.)