25 “There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. 26 people will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. 27 At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28 When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”
29 He told them this parable: “Look at the fig tree and all the trees. 30 When they sprout leaves, you can see for yourselves and know that summer is near. 31 Even so, when you see these things happening, you know that the kingdom of God is near.
32 “Truly I tell you, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. 33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.
34 “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you suddenly like a trap. 35 For it will come on all those who live on the face of the whole earth. 36 Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.”
These words from Luke may fill one with a sense of foreboding yet these signs are a herald to the return of Jesus Christ, who will put an end to all suffering and misery on Earth. Do these signs refer to our own time? Have a look at the short video below or read the news reports of climate change, natural disasters, war and injustice in the news and make up your own mind. The message here is to be ready and to have faith that God will fulfill his promise.
A message not of despair but of hope…
Do not get bogged down in the material things that are thrust upon us at this time of year or stressed by the TV ads telling us to spend money we don’t have. Instead remember the real reason we celebrate Christmas which is that Jesus came to save us and that he intends to keep that promise. Sadly many throughout the West have forgotten this and are left with only the empty and meaningless commercialism that pervades our TV screens. Help them to remember by simple things such as giving traditional Christmas cards, supporting your children’s Nativity play or attending your local church’s carol service. There is plenty on at St James’ over Christmas so why not come along?
Let’s put Christ back into Christmas!