Scripture Reading: Mark 13:24-37
‘But in those days, after that suffering,
the sun will be darkened,
and the moon will not give its light,
and the stars will be falling from heaven,
and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.
Then they will see “the Son of Man coming in clouds” with great power and glory. Then he will send out the angels, and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven.
‘From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that he is near, at the very gates. Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all these things have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. –Mark 13:24-31
A few years ago, I had the pleasure of traveling throughout Turkey seeing many of the sights one reads about in Paul’s writings. Small though it may seem, one of the highlights of my trip was eating a fresh fig shortly after plucking it from its tree. The tour bus on which I traveled stopped at a roadside fruit and vegetable stand where our guide bought enough fresh figs for all passengers who wanted one. Figs are not harvested in the USA in abundance at least not near my home so fresh figs are hard to come by here. The fruit was delicious. While I also love dried figs, they do not compare to the fresh ones.
In the USA I experience the same taste of freshness with corn freshly harvested and served. Tomatoes also taste best immediately after plucking them from their plant, dusting any dirt off on your clothing, and eating them immediately in the garden. I grew up on a farm, and anyone in my family will readily tell you I was work aversive to gardening, but I am an expert at eating prime food.
Our scripture today is eschatological as it talks about the ultimate end times. I, however, think this scripture encourages us to look at the world freshly through the seasons of life as we wait and prepare for the great coming of Christ. I tend to think he would be pleasantly pleased to arrive and find the harvest done so he can immediately join us for his great love feast.
Prayer: Lord, enable our work toward the fruition of your love ruling the world. Amen.