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Two Minute Meditations by Phil Ware
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    Football season is well underway. This means that annual trek home to our high school or university is either planned or past tense. Recognizing folks we haven’t seen for years is always a bit unnerving, but getting to be with people who were precious to us in those important passages of our lives is nearly always worth the possible embarrassment! Catching up on what the Lord has done in our lives is fun in some cases, and heartbreaking in others. As good as it may be to catch up with old friends, to renew past acquaintances, and to reunite with former best buddies, homecoming at its best is only a dim shadow of a greater day.

“Men of Galilee,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:11)

Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. (1 Thessalonians 4:13-14)

    One of the greatest promises that we have as Christians is that Jesus will return for his own. His resurrection for the dead insures that one day, all those who have “fallen asleep in him” will be raised and join with those Christians who are still alive when he returns.

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. (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17)

I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear will live. (John 5:25)

Jesus will return for his own.
    As wonderful as getting to see our Lord face to face will be, it isn’t the only blessing we have to anticipate. We are promised the great reunion with those great people of faith who have gone before us. Not only will we be reunited with those loved ones who have died with faith, we will get to see the great heroes and heroines of faith!

Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. (1 John 3:2)

I say to you that many will come from the east and the west, and will take their places at the feast with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 8:11)

    With such a great homecoming in our future, we can live for Christ with confidence! We know our future has already been secured by the victory of Christ. We will participate with him in his victory and his glory! So let’s live for him with purity and holiness as we share his grace with a watching world.

Say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope-the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ... (Titus 2:12-13)

Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure. (1 John 3:3)

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A full archive of past articles by Phil Ware is maintained.
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Related Heartlight Resources:
Coming Home
Today's Verse - 1 Thess. 4:14

About the Author...
Phil Ware is minister of the Word at Westover Hills Church of Christ in Austin, Texas. For the past 4 years, he has also been co-editor of HEARTLIGHT Magazine. For more details, click here.

Title: "Homecoming"
Author: Phil Ware
Publication Date: November 13, 2000



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