Harold Camping has predicted that Jesus is coming back and the world is going to end on Saturday, May 21, 2011. Yes, for those of you reading this post on it's published date, that is in 2 days.
I, for one, certainly hope this guy is wrong. (Actually, in no way do I believe this to be true, since Jesus says that he doesn't even know when he's returning but only God the father does. It seems odd that God would tell Harold before he told himself.)
The idea of Jesus coming back has always been a bit difficult for me. I've often heard people say they 'can't wait for Jesus to come back' or they 'so look forward to the glorious day when Jesus returns'. I get it - kind of. But honestly, I've never felt that same level of excitement about it. For the longest time, I figured it made me a bad Christian. Over the past couple of years however, I have become quite comfortable with my feelings and actually believe that it's okay to hope Jesus doesn't come back quite yet.
The problem for me is that there are a number of things that I still want to see, do and experience on this beautiful planet before God comes and restores it. Now, I certainly understand that a new heavens and reclaimed earth are going to be much better than the current one(s) however, I can't help but think that there are still a few things here and now that I would like to see how they play out:
- I want to know what kind of men my boys will grow up to be.
- I want to know what it's like to walk through a lifetime and grow old with the woman that I love.
- I want a number of people in my life to have a real, tangible experience with Jesus that brings healing to them and leads them to an even richer, more beautiful life journey.
- I want to know if the Saints will win another Superbowl (It's still so surreal to be able to use the word 'another' in that sentence.)
- I want to experience more of the church actually being god's people and reflecting his beauty and glory and representing him well to all of creation and humanity - drawing people to the resurrected Jesus, this side of the restoration of all things.
- I want to continue learning how to live more the way of Jesus, having my heart and character transformed in the middle of crap.
- I want to meet and raise my Zoe.
I'm no dummy. I understand that even if Jesus doesn't return for hundreds of years and I actually do get to see these things play out, there is no guarantee that they will play out well or the way I hope for. I also believe that if Jesus does come back on Saturday, none of the above items will matter to me anymore. I know in my heart that the restored, reclaimed, reconciled, redeemed, new heavens and earth will be quite nice, but in the highly likely event that he doesn't come back....
Well, these are just a few of the things I'm working towards, dreaming about and looking forward to.
How about you? Have you ever felt a bit ashamed by not sharing others exuberance about the sudden return of Jesus?
What dreams in your own life has God placed in your heart that you would still like to see play out?