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The Arrival

Standing on the sidelines at the airport behind the wheelchair I used to pick up a friend, I had the privilege of watching loved ones greet friends and family. One by one, as air travelers walked down the corridor into “Arrivals,” I noticed facial expressions that indicated whether or not a friendly greeting would be theirs. Some seemed almost emotionless, staring blankly straight ahead in hopes that their luggage would appear intact. Yet, in the distance, others began a slow stride then quickly gained speed as they recognized the face of a waiting treasure. Oak tag signs decorated with neon lettering and colorful flowers greeted them, along with bear hugs, broad smiles, and happy tears.  Even “Helen” didn’t realize that her whole posse would be there creating squeals of delight and affirmations about how much she had been missed, and never for her to go away for that long again, and…well, you get the point.

One scenario deeply caught my attention as I observed a young mother with two budding boys. Their eyes were fixed upon the threshold, waiting impatiently for their dad to arrive. Mom kept reminding them, “He’s almost here…keep looking.” I only had to look at the boys’ eyes to know when they had caught a glimpse of him.

There’s something about anticipation that makes the entrance even grander.

I get weary of waiting for Jesus’ return, to be perfectly honest. I have heard rumors of His coming for the 34 years I have known Him. I could point out all the wrong date settings there have been, but I’d need another 23,953 words to accomplish that! Suffice to say, ALL the date setting has been erroneous. But, I know it is going to happen. Why? Because everything else predicted in scripture has come to pass except for this. Because the One who promised is faithful. Because He can be trusted.

In  day to day life I can lose sight of His return. It’s like that loved one who boarded a departing plane possessing only a one-way ticket, yet promising a timely return. But rather than bemoan His delay, I “occupy till He comes.”  I live in the day to day with one eye on my Prize.

And I use my imagination.

What do I see in my mind’s eye? A most exuberant reunion!  My Jesus is walking towards me, broad smile on His face with eyes fixed on mine. He breaks into a sprint, picks me up in His ever-loving arms, and laughs out loud. Then as He whispers these words to me, “I told you I would return.” I am overwhelmed by a ceaseless Love as we reunite tangibly…finally.

So, I remember what the angel said when Jesus left us. “Men of Galilee…why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.”

If I keep gazing at the sky I will never accomplish my purpose here on earth. If I stare at the ground, I will lose heart. So I stand on the sidelines, waiting…anticipating…imagining. And one fine day…one sans man-made predictions…the deepest desire of my waiting heart will be fulfilled. My ultimate Love was true to His Word as He has always been.

He, thankfully, has arrived. And not a minute too late.

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Lori Travers

Lori finds the Joy of the Lord to be her strength. Born and raised an Italian Jersey girl, she has finally settled in the south as Reynolda Presbyterian church became her new home. Ministry to women, reading, writing, cooking, and anything having to do with animals are her sweet spots. Having a background in cardiac testing, she chose to stay home and raise three incredible children who are now married, and currently has 2 precious granddaughters and one faithful husband of 34 years.

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