Don’t waste your life wandering the aisles.

Mark 13:24-37

“Be on guard, keep awake, for you do not know when the time will come.” v.33

A few days ago I walked into our local Wal-mart and witnessed the return of Christ. Okay not really, but I was reminded in a rather dramatic way of what it will be like when he returns. Here’s what happened. I had gone to the store to pick up some random necessities, like we all do, when I saw something. There was a local church group that had set up, what looked like a Bake sale. There were cakes, brownies, hot coffee and cocoa. At first I thought it was a church fund raiser, but it was something far better. They were giving away all these treats for free!

As I approached the stand one of the men said to me, “Sir, we just want to show the love of God to everyone, so when you come out of the store feel free to have a snack.” I thought to myself, “What a great way to show the free gift of God on a cold winter morning.”

I went in to the store, thinking about how good it would be to come out and get a nice hot cup of coffee and a donut or two, after I get finished shopping. As I strolled through the store perusing the items, I kept telling myself I needed to get out there and get some goodies. “I’ll do it when I’m finished looking around.” I told myself several times. I’ll bet you can guess how this story ends.

After a long period of wandering around the store, I made my way out the door only to discover two things. First, the things I was looking for were not in the store, so I was coming out empty handed. Second, the free stuff was gone! They had been there all morning, but eventually had to pack up and go. What a major disappointment! I came out empty handed and disappointed. I don’t want my life to end that way.

How much worse will it be for those who miss the free gift of God? They wandered around this world looking for temporary things, telling themselves they had plenty of time to seek God, only to find what I found that day at Wal-mart. They will find, like I did, that this world has left them empty handed and disappointed. One day the Son of God will come. He will either come for you personally, at the end of your life, or he will come as he predicted for all the world to see. In either case, how terrible it will be to think you threw away eternal life for a meaningless search for the things of this world.

Jesus tells us that God has appointed a time for the end of all things. When Jesus predicted his return, he didn’t imply it would come at our convenience. The day is set. It was set before you were born. Given that fact, isn’t it a bit unwise to think you can wait around until you feel ready to be saved? Not only is that horribly arrogant, it’s nonsensical. “Now is the day of salvation.” Not later. Don’t waste your life wandering the aisles. This is one giveaway you don’t want to miss.

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