Text: Mark 13:24-32
In the name of the +Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
“The end of the world is nigh” – that classic sandwich-board warning. I wonder if anyone, anywhere has ever been motivated or scared into faith by that admonition?
I am reminded of the Beyond the Fringe sketch about the end of days
“Never mind lads, same time tomorrow” – the Scriptures speak of the signs of the times, and not a specific time. Remember “you know not the hour of the Master’s return” (Mark 13:32), and so it is most presumptuous of us to claim such esoteric knowledge.
We should not be too concerned with looking to the skies (or to the fig trees) for these signs, but concerned with what we do before that time:
- Concerned whether we are engaging with God, and deepening our journey with him, more than condemning others
- Concerned whether we are building his kingdom by sharing the good news through embracing the stranger rather than rejecting the different or the difficult
- Concerned with relieving the poor, helping the inwardly blind to see and the spiritually lame to dance rather than squatting up a mountain in fear of the end of days.
Our lives must not be measured by hours, days or years, but by what we have achieved for the Kingdom and to whom we have made a difference.
Lives should be weighed, not counted.
Next week, many of us we shall journey to Walsingham, carrying your prayers with us. Masses will be offered, candles will be lit. Time will be spent with God and with fellow pilgrims (most probably in the pub – an essential part of the Pilgrimage experience). If the Parousia (the second coming) happens before then, then the 31 of you coming might lose your deposit, but you will not mind, for the long awaited return of Christ will vindicate all that he has said, all that we have done in his name.
It will be something well worth looking for, and if you have faith, then there is nothing to be scared of. We might not know when it will be, but Daddy’s coming home, and it’ll be great!