With Advent on the horizon, this might be a good time to revisit one of its strong themes: The Second Coming. More specifically, how the world will end in the time it takes to *blink. The speed of this life-changing event will likely overwhelm or paralyze any effective reaction to what’s occurring. Suddenly life as we know it will be finished and the events of Judgment Day—prefacing eternal life—will unfold.
Perhaps one of the best ways to contemplate this eventuality is to imagine what else in life shifts or ends in about the same time span. Consider how everything might change as the result of a horrible accident or cataclysm. Talk with someone who’s experienced a sudden heart attack or stroke. Or remember how severe financial loss can occur in a digitally induced instant.
Some life-altering changes that happen suddenly may have been preceded by warning signs. A tornado’s fury, the onset of later-stage cancers, the collapse of a relationship, technological failures and widespread bankruptcies may be examples. These seemingly instantaneous occurrences may instead be tipping points—the result of slowly building conditions that suddenly give way.
Time-bound as we are, how can any of us prepare for the End of Time? Perhaps by cherishing the everyday gifts from God that also occur suddenly: The sparkle in a loved one’s eye; a smiling nod of thanks; awakening from sleep; the unexpected grace of an undeserved kindness, an “Aha!” flash in the middle of a sermon. At any moment in any day, holding dear the smallest confirmation of blinks-that-bless!
A good way to prepare the way for God’s twinkling, Second Coming eyes….
* About 1/3 of a second. Actual twinkles (and winks) stay around longer because they may be signs of delightful intimacy that eyes reveal.
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