It was the end of beautiful summer day. My family and I were all sitting on huge stone steps that lined the Ohio river for hundreds of feet. About 20,000 people were eating, talking, smoking, laughing, sleeping, checking their phones, and waiting for the annual Labor Day fireworks. As it started to get dark, people brought out laser pointers. Someone starting tossing an enormous beach ball around the crowd. Our kids were waving glow sticks in the air. Finally, at 9 p.m. the fireworks began. At first, they were pretty and quiet. The crowd hushed a bit. Our two-year-old stopped fidgeting and sat very still on my husband’s lap. We were so close to the boat where the fireworks were being launched from. The show became incredibly loud and brilliant. For about 30 minutes, we sat entranced by this amazing show in the sky above us.
God tells us that we are to pray for Christ’s return daily. But do we?
About halfway through the show, I took my eyes off the sky and looked around at the people surrounding me. Everyone's eyes were focused on the sky. No one was moving very much. No one was talking. They were all just staring. All 20,000 people were holding still and looking at one spot in the sky. It struck me that this is how it will be when Jesus Christ returns. Revelation 1:7 Revelation 1:7Behold, he comes with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.
American King James Version×says, “Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye shall see Him.”
People will be busy doing their own things: socializing, playing, eating, laughing and living life in their own way, but when Christ returns everyone will stop. Jesus described what people will be doing: “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 the 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.”
Christ’s return is a focus for me lately. The presidential election, racial upheaval, and terrorist attacks in our nation all cause me to long for His return. Our family just observed the Feast of Trumpets (Leviticus 23:23 Leviticus 23:23And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying,
American King James Version×). On this biblical festival, we attended congregational services. We prayed for, read verses about, and thanked God for the reality of Christ’s return to the earth.
God filled each of His annual Holy Days with deep meaning that explains His plan for humankind. The Feast of Trumpets teaches us about the pivotal step in God’s plan when Jesus will physically return to the earth. Jesus explained the significance of the blowing of trumpets: “And then at last, the sign that the Son of Man is coming will appear in the heavens, and there will be deep mourning among all the peoples of the earth. And they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he will send out his angels with the mighty blast of a trumpet, and they will gather his chosen ones from all over the world—from the farthest ends of the earth and heaven” (Matthew 24:29-31 Matthew 24:29-31  Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
 And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
American King James Version×). I thank God for the soon coming return of His Son!
Eventually the fireworks show ended. Although my ears were still ringing from the extremely loud finale, I thought I heard a small pop sound. “That sounded like a gunshot,” I thought, but I didn’t really believe it. A moment later, a wave of people came running toward us. “Somebody’s been shot!” I heard a woman scream. I crouched with my two-year-old, unsure of what to do. Should I run, too? There were people everywhere. Where could I go? The only thing I could think to do was pray for safety. In a few more moments, the panic of the crowd seemed to subside. Was it just a false alarm? We didn’t know. Cautiously, we made our way to our car. I checked my phone for news. An article popped up that there had been a shooting. Only hundreds of feet from us a 16-year-old had shot a 17-year-old.
This shooting emphasized for me just how intensely we need Christ’s return. While my family and I were safe in this instance, it’s obvious that we are living in a world with out-of-control problems that no human can solve. God tells us that we are to pray for Christ’s return daily (Matthew 6:10 Matthew 6:10Your kingdom come, Your will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
American King James Version×). But do we? Do we really feel the desperate need of a world without God? Or do we hide away? Do we distract ourselves with small pleasures, good food, fine clothes, and social media distractions?
The day is coming when we will not be able to hide any longer. Every eye will see Him. Are we praying with true fervency for the day of His coming? He comes to bring justice and to establish God’s Kingdom on earth. Thank God for His amazing plan!