READING: Malachi 1-4, Revelation 22
NOTE: The five day per week reading plan I will be following in 2020 (https://fivedaybiblereading.com/BibleReadingSchedule2020.pdf?utm_source=Blog+List&utm_campaign=039ef51d97-Daily_Blog_Emails&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_1f3938126f-039ef51d97-81433325) actually begins with the first reading on JANUARY 6th. For the first five days of the new year, I will use other devotions until the plan begins.
As we end one year and begin a new one in the next 24 hours, I’m reminded of the truth that Jesus’ coming is also now closer than it’s ever been. I cannot read Jesus’ words to John at the close of the Bible, “Yes, I am coming soon”(Rev 22:20) without again recognizing this truth. At the same time, though, the text forces me to ask whether I would today respond to these words the same way that John did: “Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!” (Rev 22:20).
You see, my heart is conflicted in different directions when I consider this question:
- I want Jesus to return to fix the ongoing evil that haunts this world, but I also have loved ones I want Him to save first
- I long for the day when death will be ultimately defeated, but the world-focused side of me still thinks of plans I want to fulfill in this life
- I look forward to God’s judging the devil, but I also know that I will have to stand before Christ—and I don’t know if I’ll yet have crowns I can cast at His feet
In some ways, I suppose my reticence is based on my desire to be found even more faithful when Jesus returns. I want Him to find me evangelizing, discipling, praying, giving, fighting sin, and loving Him and neighbor when He returns.
The answer, of course, is simple: I must live this way today, tomorrow, and every day that follows. It’s much easier to say, “Come, Lord Jesus” when you’ve first—and daily—said, “Jesus, I surrender all.”
PRAYER: “I surrender all to You, Lord. Come, Lord Jesus.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Psalm 63