What can I say? I love to run. I've run 4 full marathons and 6 halfs. But I love God more and I'm determined to run this race of life for Him to receive the ultimate prize of Heaven. I'd like to share my thoughts with you. You can agree or disagree. Comment or don't. You can read or not read. But it's here if you want it. Enjoy! .

Monday, September 26, 2011

A Welcome Thief

Ever been robbed? I haven't. Not personally. Knock on wood. And this is not an invitation to give me my first experience. My family was robbed when I was just a wee lad. I think I was 4 or 5. My dad, mom, older sister and me were on summer vacation. We were at some hotel heading for the beach. I guess we had stopped about halfway for the night. I don't remember much. But apparently, someone used a coat hanger during the night to open the back of our family truckster (a.k.a. station wagon). I guess since we were just stopped for the night, we had left most of our stuff in the back of our car. Don't do that by the way. Take it in. Anyways, they took it all. All our suitcases. The only thing I remember is sitting on the bed with my sister who was crying. On the other bed were my mom who was also crying I think, and my dad who was on the phone calling the police. That's about all I remember. I just remember thinking that something bad must have happened, but I guess I didn't really grasp what was going on. We ended up going on a major shopping spree, getting a new wardrobe and continuing on with our vacation. We never found our stuff. I think I lost a favorite Mickey Mouse shirt that night. I hope there's some criminal out there wearing a very small Mickey shirt who is very happy.

I know a good number of folks that have been robbed. It stinks. I hate hearing those stories. I think the worst part would be not necessarily losing your stuff, but feeling violated or unfairly treated. It's just not fair that people come in and take what is yours. It doesn't feel good and there's not usually much you can do about it. I have no sympathy for a thief. We had a student last week who walked up to another student at lunch, took his hotdog, and started eating it. When we asked him why, he simply said, "I just wanted it." Say what? But it's not your hotdog you big thief!! He took a hotdog that didn't belong to him. He just took it. No sympathy for that. He went way down on my favorite student list. I don't like thieves. Well, there's one exception.....there's only one thief that I like. In fact, I love this thief. I love Him more than my family. That thief is Jesus.

Jesus, a thief? What? Ok, so He's not exactly a thief, but the Bible says when He comes next time, He will come like a thief. He's compared to a thief. Just like a thief is sneaky and comes when you least expect it, Jesus will also. We don't know when He's coming back. That's God's plan. Would I like to know when He's coming back? Yes and no. Yes, because I would want to be ready and it would be nice just to know. But no because I want to be walking that narrow path at all times, not just because I know when He's coming. Plus, this world would be a much scarier place if everyone knew He wasn't coming back for a while. But the Bible does say he'll come like a thief. I Thess. 5:2 says....

2 for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.

But when I read this the other day, I discovered the next few verses which I've never noticed or been taught before. Look at verse 4.....

4 But you, brothers and sisters, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief.

In other words, it SHOULDN'T be like a thief to us. I've always been taught that Jesus will come like a thief....when we least expect it.....you better be prepared......almost like a scare tactic. And maybe that's a good way to get people ready. But I read this scripture as something different. To me it says that if we're walking in the ways of the Lord, if we're "not in darkness" and we have the relationship with God we're supposed to, it won't be like a thief at all. We'll be expecting it at all times and it won't be a surprise. It will be just what we've been waiting for. I don't know about you, but I think of a thief as an unhappy thing. As a scary thing. I don't want to think of Jesus's coming like that. I want to be ready always. I want to be in light, not darkness so that His coming won't surprise me at all, no matter when it is. I would LOVE to be around to get to see that during my lifetime. What a glorious and most beautiful sight that would be! Maybe I will. Maybe I won't. Maybe I'll already be with Him when He comes. But one thing is for sure....I'm going to live my life expecting Him to come at any second. I will always be ready. It won't be like a thief to me. If it is, it will be a welcome thief because I'll always be expecting Him and hoping for Him. And this "thief" can take anything He wants. Especially me. He will be the most welcome guest of all!

I love God, Griffin, my Girl, and my Guys.

Keep runnin'. The PRIZE awaits. (Php. 3:14)


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