Do not be caught unaware…

The Lord uses any and all situations to drive home a message. On Friday, my husband and I were on our way downtown to meet our daughter and her fiance for dinner. We had left early (75 min. early) giving us plenty of time to get to the restaurant, find parking and such. Well, it was Friday afternoon, peak traffic and it was backed up something horrible – unusually heavy. We could not believe it. Nevertheless, we figured, even with the heavy traffic we would still arrive on time. We were expecting traffic, so entering a congested highway was no big deal. We were not expecting a fatal traffic accident.

We had been sitting in traffic for over an hour when I got an alert on my phone about a fatal accident… on the highway we were on, about 3 exits up. Apparently, two trucks were involved in an accident and one rolled over, killing the driver. The news reported the accident had occurred before we entered the highway, less than an hour before.

Sitting in traffic is never convenient, never pleasant, never merciful. Did everyone else get the alert that afternoon? If they had news alerts set up on their phone, they probably did. I imagined not many had, just because of the impatience of the traffic. Traffic never considers why it’s backed up. It only thinks about finding a way around, jumping in front of cars, cutting people off… finding a way off the highway other than the exit ramp, etc. Traffic just wanted to keep moving. So emergency crews had to close the highway to deal with the aftermath, but no one (law enforcement) was directing traffic off the highway. It was every man for himself.

For drivers that are accustomed to traffic, they find ways to deal with the frustration. They are talking on the phone, not paying attention, perhaps complaining to person on the other side, or texting. The reason for the back up is irrelevant. Drivers just want to get to their destination.

Where are we going?

A young man, loved by family and friends died that afternoon (May he rest in peace.), and it was an inconvenience to many. He was a son, a husband, a father, and perhaps a man of God. How will his loved ones deal with their loss? No compassion from the traffic. As we moved ahead, at a snails pace, I couldn’t help but consider my own mortality.

I do not know when or where the bell will toll for me. But in an instant I will be gone. I can imagine a portal from heaven opens up and I will be snatched up and set in the presence of the Lord. Wow! To behold my Savior. I was telling my husband that I have talked to my daughters about this topic. He does not like to talk about it much, death that is. It worried me more when my daughters were young. If I died, I didn’t know who was going to take care of them? Their dad didn’t even try to keep in touch with them. Would he step up to the plate? Or would he continue to reject them? God was merciful to us. These days it’s about my grand kids. Will my daughters be able to protect them? Death can be very inconvenient! It leaves a big hole behind. Who will fill it? Gosh! Trusting in God in life and in death – is all about faith. 

A death disrupted many lives that afternoon. A wife cried out in disbelief. A child couldn’t understand why dad was not coming home. And the traffic was merciless. That’s what happens when we are not prepared for death. But we are never prepared for death, not our own, or that of a loved one. Even when we expected it and plan for it – we are not ready for it. In this case, 

According to police, the man was indecisive about whether he wanted to travel on the highway or get off, making in-and-out changes of direction.

There was no allowance. Do you know where you are headed? Is there a place waiting for you on the other side? So this man could not decide if he wanted to stay on the highway. I hope that before he passed that he had decided to trust in Jesus for his eternal destination. Because when it’s time to get off – there’s no changing lanes. 

So, I considered my own mortality that day. The best way to prepare was to make myself right with the Lord. I have to examine myself moment by moment, so when the time comes, when the Lord calls me home… when the sun sets on my life… everyone will say…”All she wanted was to go home.” And she’s finally home! Praise God!

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Ecclesiastes 9:11-12 Again I saw that under the sun the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor bread to the wise, nor riches to the intelligent, nor favor to those with knowledge, but time and chance happen to them all. For man does not know his time. Like fish that are taken in an evil net, and like birds that are caught in a snare, so the children of man are snared at an evil time, when it suddenly falls upon them.
James 4:14 whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.
James 4:13-15 Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.” 
John 14:2 In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
Revelation 16:15 “Behold, I am coming as a thief. Blessed is he who watches, and keeps his garments, lest he walk naked and they see his shame.”

What if they Lord were to return overnight, or tomorrow. Would I be ready? I pray that I will be ready when He calls me home, or that I will be found faithful should He return this day. And I pray that my death will not be an inconvenience. But – if the Lord should return and I be taken up – it’s every man for himself on the highways.

I know where I am going after I take my last breath on planet Earth. I pray the reader does too.

Mathew 24:36-44

“But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only. But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. Then two men will be in the field: one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding at the mill: one will be taken and the other left. Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched and not allowed his house to be broken into. Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.

 

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