I’m So Excited…
What excites you? Most people get excited about something – their upcoming vacation, declining gas prices, the beginning of deer season, or their recent weight loss. Admit it. The day to day of life can get old quickly. Having something to anticipate, even if it is just the weekend, can help motivate us to keep pressing onward.
Excitement shared is excitement increased. As the number of people grows, so does the volume. If you don’t believe me, listen in as the newly engaged twenty-something shows off her new bauble to her girlfriends. You better have your earplugs in place; it’s about to get loud. Or consider the difference in the decibel level when one guy watches his favorite team versus five guys and their football fanatic wives watching. Though I’ve never personally measured the sonic boom occurring there, I can guarantee the company magnifies the enjoyment.
Do you know what it’s like, though, to be pumped about a future event only to have others not share your enthusiasm? You want them to be just as excited as you are, and you don’t understand their blasé attitude. You might get offended if they don’t respond in the way you expect. For various reasons, people can even try to squelch your joy.
So at the risk of exposing my excitement to people who don’t share it, I want to tell you what keeps me going.
Jesus is coming back!
Are you excited too? Did you just mentally, perhaps even verbally, shout out “Hallelujah!?” Or did I crush your hopes for something to brighten your day? I’m sorry if I disappointed you.
Many factors influence your response to Jesus’ return. I want to examine some of those. See if any of them resonate with you. Don’t worry. I won’t get offended if you don’t share my excitement. I’m excited enough for both of us, and I’m praying that my words will increase your anticipation. That’s what often happens. Excitement, like colds, is catching. I hope you will catch mine.
I’m excited about Jesus’ return because…
I’ve Heard About Jesus’ Return.
Maybe you haven’t. Getting excited about something you are unaware of is hard. Have I got news for you! Jesus is coming! That still might not get your heart pumping because you don’t know who Jesus is or what His return could mean for you. You’ve come to the right place to find out.
Here at the I Am A Watchman website, we have many resources to help you. Start with “The Story of Jesus.” It will explain Jesus’ identity, His mission, and what He can accomplish in your life today. Then look at some of the other resources here to discover His plan for earth’s future and your future. Like any adventure, it can get intense, but it will be a ride worth taking.
Jesus Means Something To Me.
It perplexes me. My wife doesn’t get excited when she finds out the latest installment of the Star Wars franchise is showing. The characters and the storyline don’t interest her all that much. I, on the other hand, enjoy science fiction and can identify with Luke Skywalker. He became a part of world culture when I was in sixth grade. He is a symbol for all those who fight against impossible odds with embarrassing resources to achieve a glorious victory. I guess that’s the same reason Jesus means something to me.
I was fighting a battle I could not win – a battle against sin and its consequences. I had nothing with which to fight, not even a lightsaber. Jesus, who is the Light, stepped into that hopeless situation and, by His sacrificial death and victorious resurrection, He rescued me.
Getting excited about rescue and especially about your Rescuer makes sense. It also helps me understand why others don’t share my excitement. They haven’t shared my experience. Jesus hasn’t rescued them yet.
It’s not fair of anyone to expect an enthusiastic reaction from people who have no emotional investment and who receive no benefit. Why should I get excited about the winner of the World Cup if my team isn’t playing, I don’t like soccer, and I didn’t make a wager on the outcome? It doesn’t affect me. Those who do not have a relationship with Jesus don’t see how His return will affect them. So they miss the joy they could be experiencing.
I Have Something to Make Jesus Proud.
Do you remember what it was like when you excitedly anticipated seeing your parents? Not because you had a bad day, but because you had a great day. Today was the day you got the highest test grade in the class. Today, the teacher caught you doing everything she required. You had your homework. You remembered to bring your calculator. When others were unkind on the playground, you refrained from retaliation. Your teacher noticed, and she promised to tell your dad when he came to get you. You were so excited because you knew he would be proud.
Jesus will be proud of me when He comes. I hope that doesn’t sound obnoxious or superior. I don’t mean it that way, so I’m sorry if it’s offensive. I fully recognize that everything good about me or my accomplishments is only because of Him (John 15:5).
You might even question how God could be proud of or pleased with something as weak as a human. I would doubt it too if I didn’t already have His statement to that effect (Heb. 11:16, 39). He says the primary means of making Him proud is faith that leads to obedience (Heb. 11:6). I believe Him.
Don’t get me wrong. There are days I’m relieved Jesus did not come. I’m not perfect. I’ll admit that. Sometimes I do things or say things which would cause me extreme embarrassment and shame if Jesus were to arrive at that moment. But then I remember. Jesus doesn’t need to be physically present to see my behavior. He already knows. Nothing surprises Him or catches Him off guard. I also remember He has already forgiven me and will never reject me. That excites me!
Am I where I could be? No, but I have grown. Am I all that I should be? No, but I’m God’s child. He said that whoever is proud of Him before men, He will be proud of before His Father (Matt. 10:32).
The moment I stand before Jesus, I will stop doing, thinking, or saying anything which would rightly cause His embarrassment. For the rest of eternity, I will make Him proud.
Jesus Has Some Terrific Plans For Me.
The moment parents show up at Grandma’s house, the laughter they heard through the door can quickly turn to sobs. The children don’t cry because their parents are abusive. Grandma had just offered to take them for some ice cream. They made plans, and now they fear they’ll miss out on something wonderful. As soon as the children find out their parents are there to escort them to Disney World, their tears quickly give way to cheers.
I’m in the final third of my life. God has privileged me to enjoy 28 years of marriage. My children are adults, and my grandchildren are growing. I have invested in many lives. My body, though still healthy, is showing signs of aging. It hurts to get out of bed. The list of people I love who are already with Jesus grows longer every year. I’ve ridden most of the rides Disney World has to offer. I’ve eaten a lot of ice cream too. Now it’s time for rest. Heaven gets more appealing with each passing day.
You may not be in my position. You have a lot of life you still want to live. It’s hard to get excited about the next life when you anticipate so much from this one. Your lack of excitement when you think of Jesus’ return does not indicate a lack of love for the One Who is returning. It indicates a lack of understanding concerning who He’s bringing with Him, where He’s taking you, and what you’ll be doing there.
I know you’ve got dreams and a plan for how to make them a reality. Fantastic! But if Jesus’ return interrupts your plans, you have no reason to be sad. As grandiose as your plans may be, His plans far outstrip any you could ever imagine.
You may plan to own a spacious house. I promise you, His home is roomier than the most palatial estate. You’re working to climb the corporate ladder. He wants you to reign with Him. You want to travel the world. He’s going to create a new one and give you the capacity to traverse the universe. You cannot outthink God. The moment you step into His presence, you will kick yourself for ever settling for so little on earth instead of believing God for so much in Heaven.
Jesus isn’t trying to steal your fun. He wants to give you laughter (John 10:10). Don’t allow your desire for momentary pleasure to rob you of your chance for eternal joy (Heb. 11:25-26).
I’m Ready For His Return.
I’ve already told you I’m emotionally and physically ready for Jesus’ return. Unfortunately, many share my readiness to this extent but will not be going when Jesus comes. They want to go, but they are not spiritually ready. I am.
If you don’t share my confidence, His arrival might make you nervous not excited. You’re worried you won’t be ready for His return. He is the King. It’s tough enough to plan for the arrival of your relatives. And they don’t typically show up unannounced (Matt. 24:44). Let me allay your fears.
Jesus isn’t concerned about the cleanliness of your house; it’s the cleanliness of your heart He longs for. When your heart is clean, you are ready for Jesus’ return. My heart didn’t get clean through my efforts (Titus 3:5-6; Eph. 2:8-9). If I was relying on that, I could never have confidence or peace. “Jesus can’t come back yet. I haven’t done enough good works. I want Him to be impressed.”
How would I ever know whether or not I had done enough to reach His standard of clean? No one can.
Thankfully, Jesus doesn’t take those who measure up to His standards. No one meets His expectations. He takes those who admit their failure; those who rest in His mercy and grace alone for their rescue. He applies His blood to their impurity and makes them clean (1 John 1:7).
I’m going when Jesus comes. I haven’t done enough to get a ride, but He did in my place (2 Cor. 5:21).
I Won’t Be Going By Myself.
Any long trip into unfamiliar territory can be frightening especially knowing that trip could come at an unexpected time. Being confident that others I love will be making this journey with me helps to relieve the stress and increase the anticipation. I am also encouraged by the realization that Jesus doesn’t expect me to find my own transportation or directions. He’s coming to escort me home. My mom and dad and a host of other Christians are returning with Jesus too.
I hope you know someone who will greet you in the sky that day. You probably have attached your heart to others who won’t be making this trip. Of all the reasons people give for not getting excited about Jesus’ return, this one has the most potential for dampening my spirits.
I have a list of over forty people whose spiritual rescue I pray for weekly. I want them all to go. Thankfully, none of my immediate family is on that list. It would be stressful to know I was going, but my wife or one of my children was not. I don’t think I could deal with it. My heart breaks for you if you face this reality. You don’t want them to experience the suffering the world will endure after Jesus’ return.
Jesus doesn’t want people to suffer either. He’s so desirous to prevent their suffering that He died to open the pathway for all to come (John 3:17). And now, He has patiently delayed His return to give as many as possible time to repent (2 Pet. 3:9-10). Continue praying for your loved ones. Jesus worked a miracle in your life; He can rescue your family and friends too.
Jesus Will Reward Me Not Judge Me.
It’s hard for anyone to get excited about judgment. Oh, they might get excited about being the source of it, but not the object of it. To think that Jesus will be judging people as soon as He sees them can take the zest out of anyone’s departure. There will be an evaluation, but it will establish rewards, not assign worth or negative consequences. Everyone gets excited about awards.
This will be the time when everything gets set right; when all the inequities of life finally make sense. Jesus will affirm those who secretly, sacrificially, and selflessly served Him and others. It doesn’t matter that their sacrifices were small. The givers gave their gifts with love. And the ones whose motivation was people’s praise will have to settle for what they received on earth. They will get no more from Jesus.
Jesus doesn’t want to judge (John 3:17). He wants to forgive. Forgiveness flows from His nature. He is love (1 John 4:8). Even during the Tribulation, the seven-year period of God’s wrath on humanity after Jesus’ return, He spends just as much time redeeming people as He does judging them.
I Believe I’ll Be Seeing Him Soon.
I know. People have been saying Jesus’ return is soon ever since Jesus left the first time. Some people have set dates for His return even though Jesus told us no one knows for sure. When it didn’t happen, people experienced disappointment. Multiple disappointments result in skepticism and a hesitancy to get excited.
The fact that others have been wrong about the timing of Jesus’ return doesn’t negate the promise of it. You don’t have to be careful with your excitement. He’s coming. I believe it’s soon.
You might believe differently. You think it’s too early to get excited about Jesus’ return. According to your understanding of Scripture, multiple events need to occur before Jesus’ return. You plan on getting excited, but not yet. Excitement is one of those things that is hard to maintain over an extended period.
Back in the day when everyone could go out into the airport terminal, a little girl sees an airplane landing. She gets all excited because she believes her Mommy is on it. Her grandparents say, “That’s not her plane. We still have to wait.”
Waiting isn’t easy. It can be depressing. But when what you’re waiting for is worth the effort, the anticipation can add to the excitement. Regardless of the sequence of events, Jesus is coming.
To get excited about Jesus’ coming you have to believe Jesus exists. I don’t get excited about Santa Claus or the Easter bunny, and some people put Jesus in their category. Do you? Unlike these other two characters, there is a mountain of evidence to validate Jesus’ existence and His divine identity.
Jesus is coming. Every eye will see Him. Every tongue will confess Him as Lord. Every knee will bow in submission (Phil. 2:10-11). My prayer is that when Jesus returns, you will greet Him with excitement rather than fear.
Are You Excited Yet?
I hope this explanation of my excitement’s source has evoked some anticipation in you. If not, that’s okay. I don’t need you to share my enthusiasm. There’s someone else whose excitement level dwarfs mine. His name is Jesus. You may not be excited about seeing Him, but He’s thrilled about seeing you. How do I know? He’s making preparations for your arrival (John 14:2-3), and when He comes, He’ll do the same thing you do when you’re excited. He’ll be making a lot of noise (1 Thess. 4:16).
Does your lack of enthusiasm for Jesus’ arrival bother you? If it does, you can do something about it. Begin or strengthen your relationship with Jesus. We’ve got some resources here at I Am A Watchman to help with that. Look at the Loving Jesus section. Find out what the Bible has to say about life after Jesus’ return. The more you search, the more excited you will become. Get around some people who are excited about Jesus’ arrival. Like I said; excitement is contagious. And then start making more substantial investments in eternity than you do in your 401(k). Jesus said investment creates passion.
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matt. 6:19-21)
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